As September 21, the 49th Martial Law commemoration, draws near, attacks on critics and progressives continued. In this week alone, students of UP Baguio stood their ground in a virtual red-tagging seminar organized by Regional Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (RTF-ELCAC) and Commission on Higher Education – Cordillera Administrative Region (CHED-CAR).
From another people’s lawyer being gunned down to another case of “forced surrenderees,” here are all of the human rights violations reported last week.
September 12 – Carbon Public Market’s Lavo Seaside, Cebu City
Vendors’ stalls were demolished in Carbon Public Market’s Lavo Seaside, Cebu City last September 11. This was after the vendors were promised new stalls, although there were no legally binding documents for the said replacements, ANINAW Productions reports.
In the morning of September 12, Carbon’s Market Operations Division (MOD) promised vendors that new stalls would be built within seven to ten days upon dismantling existing stalls. However, the MOD failed to show documents proving their provision.
Republic Act (RA) 7279, otherwise known as the Urban Development and Housing Act of 1992 , prohibits demolitions during weekends, unless “affected individuals consent otherwise”. Movement Against Carbon Market Privatization (MACMP) asserts that letting the vendors dismantle their stalls is “a tactic to circumvent the law”.
Since last January, carbon vendors have been resisting the carbon market modernization project between the Megawide Construction Corp. and the Cebu City government.
September 14 – [location undisclosed]
Mulisectoral alliance BAYAN Timog Katagalugan (TK) slammed the forced and fake surrendering of Aichi Forge Philippines, Inc. and Wyeth Suaco unionists. This was after LTC Danilo Escandor, said to be the commander of the 2nd Civil Military Operations (CMO) Batallion, 2ID, PA, “bragged” in the unit’s social media account.
Before the said posting, the military conducted months-long house-to-house operations in residences of union-leaders. State agents even “called” unionists’ family members, and were summoned to their respective barangay halls. According to BAYAN TK, the unionists were threatened of being imprisoned if they were not to surrender and disaffiliate from their federations.
Meanwhile, in Mandaue City, Cebu, police conducted “anti-terrorism” forum at the Cebu International Convention Center (CICC) last September 11, during what should have been a scheduled vaccination.
Combined forces of police, Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT), and members of Mandaue City Housing and Urban Development Office (HUDO) arrived at CICC. According to residents, they spotted several intelligence officers surveying their houses to locate “members of [urban poor group] Kadamay”.
September 15 – Surallah, South Cotabato
Atty. Juan Macababbad of Surallah, South Cotabato was shot dead by unknown assailants in front of his own home, radio station 95.7 Brigada News FM Korondal says.
Witnesses say that Atty. Macababbad was closing the gate of his house when men in two motorcycles stopped and fired at least seven shots on the lawyer. Macababbad was immediately brought to Javelosa Hospital but was pronounced dead on arrival. The three suspects, however, were able to escape.
Macababbad was a human rights lawyer especially of the poor. He is the vice chair of the Union of Peoples’ Lawyers in Mindanao (UPLM), and a member of Bayan Muna and of the National Union of People’s Lawyers (NUPL).
Human Rights Watch is a weekly collation of human rights news stories gathered from different sources by UPLB Perspective. This initiative was launched in response to the sweeping number of human rights violations (HRVs) among various sectors across the country.