SAVE PATUNGAN! | 353 fisherfolk and peasant families to be displaced from livelihood
in looming demolition in Brgy. Patungan
Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya-Pilipinas) vows to thwart the impending demolition of fishing community in Brgy. Patungan, Maragondon, Cavite.
353 fisherfolk and peasant families are set to be demolished on July 12 on the basis of Writ of Demolition ordered by the Naic Regional Trial Court (RTC) under presiding Judge Lerio C. Castigador.
602-hectare fishing and farming community being claimed by the Maria Theresa Virata Realty Corporation (MTV Realty Corporation) was sold to Henry SY, a business-tycoon who is about to convert Patungan’s productive fishing and agricultural grounds into a money-making eco-tourism hub. This will result to the demolition and displacement of 353 fisherfolk and peasant families depending mainly on its rich fishing and agricultural grounds on a day to day basis.
According to the residents, although there is a relocation site offered to them, there is no adequate livelihood in the relocation area that can sustain their everyday lives unlike in Patungan.
“Our forefathers have long been here 150 years ago. They were the ones who cleared the area to be suitable for residential purposes. Now a giant ‘developer’ and Henry Sy suddenly came and want us to leave the land where we grew up to pave way for their money-making ventures,” Susana Agner, a local resident and also President of Save Patungan Now Movement said.
According to Save Patungan Now Movement, there is a strong militarization in their community since RTC has issued the demolition order. Philippine National Police (PNP) and Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) have stationed and built military detachments inside the community to intimidate, threaten and force the residents of Patungan to leave their homes.
“The AFP and PNP who are supposed to serve and protect the people are acting like a private-goons of Henry Sy. Every day is like we are on a warzone. These state forces have brought fear and terror especially to the children. We want them out of our community now!” Agner said.
Pamalakaya meanwhile strongly appeals to President Duterte to heed the calls of the impoverished fishers and peasants for a right to decent livelihood.
“We call on President Duterte to save the residents of Patungan from ominous eviction from their livelihoods and reject all the coastal-based conversion and privatization projects that will put the lives of the fishers and farmers at stake,”
“We also call on the fisherfolk, farmers and other residents of Brgy. Patungan to unite and collectively assert their right to livelihood and dignity by any means,” the Pamalakaya said. ###