As casualties hit at 3 dead, 88 missing
By Earl O. Condeza and Danilda L. Fusilero
KIDAPAWAN CITY—Twelve police investigators who served its search warrant did not find any firearm or ammunition at the seven buildings in Spottswood Methodist Center here where 4,500 protesters sought sanctuary since police opened fire at them Friday, April 1.
Finding only a police cap and a seven-colored pouch, the search at the farmers’ sanctuary was the latest in the harrowing events which left three farmers dead, while sketchy reports cited two more women as among the five fatalities.
Ariel Casilao, first nominee of Anakpawis Partylist said the three confirmed dead include Rotello Daelto from Barangay Binoongan, Arakan Municipality; Victor Lumandang from Brgy. Alobayon, Magpet and Enrico Pabrica, from Kidpawan City.
The victims included 88 missing persons who were “presumably arrested and detained at Kidapawan City Police Station,” said Casilao.
He said “37 wounded are currently being treated”, adding the numbers may still increase.
Here is the list of the 88 missing persons from the protesters:
- Romy Manggawan 18, Sitio Tungao Temporan, Magpet
- Bartolome Barette, 38, Purok 2 Brgy. Sto Niño, Kidapawan City
- Rolly Molina, 27, Purok 2 Brgy. Sto Niño, Kidapawan City
- Renaldo Jr. Curices, 10, Brgy. Marbel, Kidapawan City
- Arche Anuloy, 28, Sitio Tungao Temporan Manpet
- Marcelo Ados, 35, Sito Tungao Temporan Manpet
- Valentina Perden, 65, Brgy. Ma. Caridad, Arakan
- Joshua Palomnaria, 14, Brgy. Sikitan, Kidapawan City
- Roger Ocom, 14, Brgy. Sikitan Kidapawan City
- Ronaldo Liamboran, 47, Brgy. Sikitan, Kidapawan City
- Zandro Redondo, 40, Brgy. Sikitan, Kidapawan City
- Romy Ogton, 22, Brgy. Anapolon, Arakan
- Anthony Ogton, 24, Brgy. Anapolon, Arakan
- Fe Caña, 50, Sitio Timanggong, Arakan
- Antonio Lapis, 48, Sitio Timanggong, Arakan
- Lita Pepeto, 70, Sitio Timanggong, Arakan
- Vilma Vicente, 43, Brgy. Anapolon, Arakan
- Joel Benkira, 43, Brgy. Anapolon, Arakan
- Jerry Vicente, 45, Brgy. Anapolon, Arakan
- Josephine Alagao, 48, Brgy. Mabuhay Pres. Roxas
- Joy Regondon 30, Brgy Mabuhay Pres. Roxas
- Nimpa Sadhi, 48, Brgy, Mabuhay Pres. Roxas
- Jenny Barientos 30, Brgy. Mabuhay Pres. Roxas
- Gardo Barientos, 35, Brgy. Mabuhay Pres. Roxas
- Boyboy Ortega, 22, Brgy. Mabuhay Pres. Roxas
- Ariel Nariso, 28, Brgy. Bunay Magpet, Cotabato
- Edelberto Cabaluro, 59, Brgy. Salasang Arakan, Cotabato
- Rey Andos, 35, Brgy. Malinan, Kidapawan City
- Donnis Paran, 24, Brgy. Malinan, Kidapawan City
- Asiong Magamod, 48, Brgy. Malinan, Kidapawan City
- Beboy Mahinay, 62, Brgy. Malinan, Kidapawan City
- Atot Legue, 40, Pob. Arakan, Cotabato
- Lolong Dimagnaong, 50, Brgy. Jumandang, Arakan
- Mario Badang, 45, Brgy. Noa Magpet, Cotabato
- Nonoy Dilgado, 30, Brgy. Noa Magpet, Cotabato
- Aran Idoo, 18, Brgy Noa Magpet, Cotabato
- Rey Idoo, 16, Brgy. Noa Magpet, Cotabao
- Jun Jun Idoo, 16, Brgy. Noa Magpet, Cotabao
- Jani Idoo, 2o, Brgy. Noa Magpet, Cotabao
- Oyong Badang, 19, Brgy. Noa Magpet, Cotabao
- Nagno Danyog, 29, Brgy. Noa Magpet, Cotabao
- Otong Magyao, 43, Brgy. Noa Magpet, Cotabao
- Inday Magyao, 38, Brgy. Noa Magpet, Cotabao
- Floremena Tula, 56, Brgy. Noa Magpet, Cotabao
- Tao Obo, 24, Brgy. Noa Magpet, Cotabao
- Richard Mayegma, Purok 5 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Dico Oquira, Purok 5 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Estela Elid, Purok 5 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Myena Elid, Purok 5 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Jubita Debahid, Purok 5 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Bogoy Bantag, Purok 5 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Cyrus Magyao, Purok 4 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Jamil Maasan, Purok 4 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Folomina Budo, Purok 4 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Garciano Lauda, Purok 3 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Bensor Dagsang, Purok 3 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Joan Dagsang, Purok 3 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Damayuan Tumbalay, Purok 3 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Nang Landa, Purok 3 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Marinsie Lauda, Purok 3 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Corason Gutcherez, Purok 3 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Jing-Jing Ecdong, Purok 3 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- Richard Emboc, Purok 3 Brgy. Temporan, Magpet, Cotabato
- May-May Manit, Purok 4, Katindo, Arakan
- Ronnie Ansako, Purok 4, Katindo, Arakan
- Vencar Dadsong, Purok 4, Katindo, Arakan
- Joan Dadsong, Purok 4, Katindo, Arakan
- Jonatan Aurod, Purok 6 Ganatan, Arakan
- Gabriel Aurod, Purok 6 Ganatan, Arakan
- Reymond Oti, Purok 6 Ganatan, Arakan
- Randy Maylan, Purok 6 Ganatan, Arakan
- Jason Robeto, Purok 6 Ganatan, Arakan
- Jean Robeto, Purok 6 Ganatan, Arakan
- Corazon Gutierrez, Sitio Katindo Brgy. Malibata
- Norberto Andrear, Brgy, Anapolon, Arakan
- Badong Remadabia, Brgy. Sigundanon, Arakan
- Tiban Sayad, Brgy. Sigundanon, Arakan
- Carlito Alcordo, Brgy. Sigundanon, Arakan
- Tresco Marapan, Brgy. Sigundanon, Arakan
- Joel Ventura, Brgy. Sigundanon, Arakan
- Jose Arsenio, Brgy. Sigundanon, Arakan
- Benben Mangga, Brgy. Sigundanon, Arakan
- Ran-Ran Oston, Brgy. Sigundanon, Arakan
- Analyn Grande, Brgy. Sigundanon, Arakan
- Marites Dela Cruz, , Brgy. Cabalantian, Arakan
- Irene Barneso, 28, Brgy. Cabalantian, Arakan
- Roger Aros, Brgy. Cabalantian, Arakan
- Teodoro Cranzo, Jr., Kidapawan City
Based on reports from Bombo Radyo, the Philippine National Police claimed two police officers are in critical condition and 40 were injured from their ranks.
In the latest development, Bayan Muna Rep. and senatorial bet Neri Colmenares and Kabataan Partylist Rep. Terry Ridon initiated the tracking of those declared missing protesters.
Colmenares said “78 protesters” categorized as under “police custody” were found at two separate locations.
Male protesters were placed at the Kidapawan City gymnasium while the female at the Kidapawan City Pilot Central Elementary School.
Colmenares who visited the farmers assured the victims of “legal assistance from human rights lawyers to ensure their release from illegal detention.”
“Di daw arrested pero hindi naman pinapalabas (They said those people were not arrested, but they were not allowed to go out). This is illegal detention. There are a lot of violations starting from the execution of warning, the methods and the actual use of firearms during the dispersal,” said Colmenares.
Holding those “forcible invited for questioning and by not allowing those who sought refuge at the Methodist Church to go out are violations of the protesters rights,” he added.
The protesting farmers blocked the Davao-Cotabato highway along Quezon Avenue in Kidapawan City to demand for 15,000 sacks of rice and farm subsidies from the provincial government. They also demanded for government’s intervention to address the low selling price of their produce.
Farmers ‘trapped’ in church compound
During the dispersal, farmers and activists fled towards the Spottswood Methodist Center compound.
However, since Friday night the PNP has deployed at least 200 forces outside the gate of the compound. Casilao said North Cotabato PNP Provincial Director Police Senior Superintendent Alexander Tagum “applied for a Search Warrant” Friday, afternoon.
On Saturday morning, April 2, a search warrant with no. 127 was issued by the Regional Trial Court Branch 17 for violation of Section 28 of the Republic Act 10591 or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act.
Searching the sanctuary
Atty. Orlando Daño of the Public Attorneys Office (PAO) who accompanied the search declared some three hours later: “Nothing found, negative. No firearms found.”
The execution of the search happened around 9:00 am and was witnessed by the PAO, Ariel Casilao of Anakpawis, several media groups, and Kidapawan City councilor Ruby Sison of the Committee on Human Rights.
The search warrant was limited to firearms as objects to be seized.
“Walay nakita og nakuha bisan usa ka lugas sa pulbura (Not a trace of gunpowder was found),” Reverend Jurie Jayme of Karapatan Southern Mindanao said.
Daño said the protesters may file a case.
“Depende na sa organizers (protesters) kung mag-file sila kaso. Kadtong nasakitan, namatyan pwede sila mo-take og legal action (It depends on the organizers if they will file a case. Those who were injured, killed, they can take legal action),” Daño said after the search.
The environmental activist group Kalikasan People’s Network for the Environment (Kalikasan PNE) said the incident “was rooted in the Aquino government’s neglect of the climate phenomenon’s impacts as early May 2014.”
“The PAGASA weather bureau has warned of the El Niño cycle’s impacts as early as 2014, and furthered in 2015 that it will be prolonged up to June to July this year. After two years of failing to deliver sufficient agricultural support to El Niño-affected peasant communities, it is utterly callous that the only government response that the farmers got is a hail of bullets,” said Clement Bautista, National Coordinator, Kalikasan PNE.
PAGASA announced the start of the El Niño cycle last 2014, but released a series of El Niño warnings since June 2015 warning the public that the current cycle was the “strongest in modern history” and will be prolonged well into the middle of 2016.
“Two months after North Cotabato’s state of calamity declaration, farmers still did not get any immediate food or agricultural implement aid. Criminal neglect from the national down to the local level, hallmarks of the Aquino government’s brand of confronting disasters and climate impacts, is what made the crisis faced by North Cotabato farmers inevitable,” Bautista said.
The environmental group said this was not the first time the Aquino administration failed to effectively reduce risks of climate-related disasters.
Bautista said, “this is like Typhoon Yolanda all over again.”
“The difference is that the El-Niño impacts were slow-onset and should have been anticipated and prepared for years ago. We could have averted a situation like this if the national government worked on the ‘climate-proofing’ of irrigation systems, crop resiliency, and socio-economic aid to peasant communities even before the predicted start of El Niño in 2014” he said. (With reports from Zea Io Ming C. Capistrano and Maria Patricia C. Borromeo/davaotoday.com)