Military abducts 4 organizers, peasant couple
Four activists and organizers were abducted by state armed forces last May and June according to recent reports of Kilusang Mayo Uno and Gabriela. In addition, the 94th IB abducted a peasant couple in Himamaylan City this month.
Victims Elizabeth “Loi” Magbanua and Alipio “Ador” Juat, both workers’ organizers, remain missing since May 3. They were last seen in Barangay Punturin, Valenzuela City after attending a meeting. Elgene Mungcal of Gabriela Women’s Partylist and Ma. Elena “Cha” Cortez Pampoza of Anakpawis are also still missing since being abducted last July 3. They were last seen at Winfare Supermarket, Moncada, Tarlac.
In Negros Occidental, the 94th IB abducted peasant couple Gerald Ganti and Dalen Alipo-on, both members of the Mahalang Farmer’s Association, in Sitio Mambalayong, Barangay Mahalang, Himamaylan City last July 15. Soldiers barged into and ransacked the couple’s house.
Killing. Peasant Pompeo Landisa was killed last July 20 when the 62nd IB fired indiscriminately at Sitio Catuptop, Barangay Trinidad, Guihulngan City, Negros Oriental. Soldiers claim it was an encounter.
Arrests. Local police arrested Gary Campos, a Lumad-Manobo teacher, in Tandag City, Surigao del Sur last July 17. Police accosted him while travelling and detained him in Butuan City Police Station. Campos is a member of a Lumad organization defending the Andap Valley Complex against plunder.
On the same day, police illegally arrested on trumped-up charges civilian Charlie Saliganan in Barangay Poblacion, Sta. Catalina, Negros Oriental.
Meanwhile, Ramonito Mahinay was arrested on a trumped-up case of illegal possession of firearms last July 9 in Sitio Kamanggahan, Barangay Tabon, Vallehermoso.
Last July 6, the 79th IB arrested a civilian in Sitio Banwa Minatay, Barangay Marcelo, Calatrava, Negros Occidental. Earlier, soldiers fired indiscriminately at houses in the sitio, wounding a child.
In Oriental Mindoro, five civilians were illegally arrested by the police on trumped-up charges in Sitio Nara, Barangay Villa Pag-asa, Bansud last July 5. The victims were identified as Joel Raña Manis, Abegail Buendicho and couple Ricky and Sarah Hatulan, and another unidentified individual. They are being accused of being NPA members.
Harassment. Soldiers of the 542nd Engineering Battalion harassed the Mijares family at their home in Sitio Lagtapon, Barangay San Antonio, Himamaylan City last July 14. Last June 24, the same unit tried to abduct a 3-year old child of the Mijareses.
Meanwhile, last July 15, Althea Beatrice Papa, a national official of the Kabataan Partylist (KPL), was harassed and denied enrolment by the school administration in the University of Makati. She and the KPL were tagged “terrorists.”