Pamalakaya condemns serious threats to its Luzon leader opposing Chinese aggression in the West Philippine Sea
Manila, Philippines – The Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) strongly condemns the threat to the safety and security of its Vice-Chairperson for Luzon and Pamalakaya-Central Luzon Chairperson, Bobby Roldan, who received a threatening text message last August 16. Roldan is a fisherfolk leader from Bataan, an organizer in fishing communities in Central Luzon, and a common face at protests in front of the Chinese consulate in Makati City and has even attended the fourth State of the Nation Address (SONA) of President Rodrigo Duterte last July to highlight national sovereignty in the West Philippine Sea.
“We vehemently condemn the harassment against Roldan, who fights for the rights of small fisherfolk in the West Philippine Sea and against Chinese aggression in our territory. Whoever is behind those malicious and derogatory messages and threat, is clearly a traitor to the nation and the Filipino people,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA National Chairperson and former Anakpawis Party-list solon said in a statement.
The text message sent to Roldan said “Salot ka! Pekeng mangingisda! Npa! Walang diyos! Mamamatay tao! Tantanan mo na panlilinlang m0 sa taumbayan, susun0d na cl sa lilinisin namin laban sa dem0ny0ng gaya mo! Magbag0ng buhay ka na!” At the same day, a threatening message was also sent to Joseph Canlas, Chairperson of Alyansa ng Magbubukid sa Gitnang Luson (AMGL) and Anakpawis Party-list Central Luzon Regional Coordinator. Pamalakaya-Central Luzon is part of AMGL.
“Hindi biro ang ganitong harassment sa gitna ng malawakang pagpatay at pandarahas sa mga magsasaka at aktibistang lumalaban para sa karapatan. Kaya inilalantad namin ito para mabigyang proteksyon ang aming lider-mangingisda at mga magsasaka sa Central Luzon,” Hicap added.
Hicap said that two Pamalakaya leaders have been gunned down in Guihulngan City, Negros, namely namely Alberto “Leboy” Tecson, Vice-Chairperson of Pamalakaya-Guihulngan City, killed on July 24, 2017, and his successor Jaime Delos Santos, Chairperson of the same Pamalakaya chapter, killed on October 6, 2018. At least 6 fisherfolk activists, 3 in Negros Oriental, 1 in Masbate, 1 in Sorsogon, and 1 in Batangas, have been killed under Duterte’s watch.
The group is planning file a complaint at the Commission on Human Rights, to urge for an investigation on the harassment case.
“We will not allow this kind threat to persist. The moment we find out who was behind the message, we will immediately charge them with appropriate cases,” Hicap vowed.
( Hindi namin hahayaan ang mga ganitong kaso, sa sandaling makilala namin ang nagtext sa kanya, ay agad namin siyang kakasuhan,” Hicap vowed.
He then claimed that this case has been normalized under the Duterte regime amid its anti-human rights stance.
“Pro-China na, anti-human rights pa. Si Duterte ang pasimuno ng mga atake sa mahihirap sa buong bansa. Takot na takot ito sa malawakang pagkakaisa at pagkilos ng mga magsasaka at iba pang sektor sa kanayunan, para singilin siya sa mga krimen niya sa mamamayan. Dapat magkaisa ang lahat para ipagtanggol ang karapatang pantao, hustisya at demokrasya sa bansa,” he ended. ###