GREEN MINDED: Thoughts on Philippine Agriculture Today

There are no words and curses enough to describe this brutal state.

First, they tried to kill Isabello Tindasan. Also known as Tatay Bello to many, Tindasan is the chairman of the Compostela Farmers Association (CFA), a local chapter of Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP). After the alleged failed assassinations, the 66th IB and its minions filed trumped-up charges against Tatay Bello.

CFA is firm in their commitment not to allow Agusan Petroleum and Minerals Corporation (AgPet) to plunder their farmlands. AgPet, a company owned by San Miguel Corporation’s Ramon Ang, applied for mining exploration for around 12, 219 hectares of land between Compostela Valley and Davao Oriental.

On February 9, 2016 they killed Jennifer Albacite, a banana cue vendor and a member of CFA. Then in October 10, 2017 they gunned down Jimmy Saypan on his way to his farm. The seeds of corn that Jimmy supposed to plant were filled with blood. A day after the shooting, Jimmy died at a hospital in Tagum City.

On March 2, 2017 couple Ramon and Leonela Pesadilla were about to sleep. Suspected state forces barged in their house, they shoot Leonela first then they shoot Ramon inside their bedroom in front of their grandchild.

They arrested five farmers more on July 2, 2017. Alicia Tindasan, Jhoanna Baugto, Estanislao Talledo, Alexir Mata and Rolan Segovia. These farmers are known leaders among the locals in Compostela.

On November 29, 2017 they killed Rodrigo Timoteo, who was also a CFA member. At the funeral of Timoteo, elements of the AFP’s 66th IB arbitrarily arrested 17-year-old Jean Marie, just as the age of Duterte’s granddaughter who had the privilege to do some Imeldeffic photoshoot. Unlike Duterte’s granddaughter, though, Jean Marie was allegedly tortured.

Earlier this week the lifeless body of Jeanierose Albacite-Porras was found dead at a funeral parlor in Compostela Valley. Jeanirose or we fondly called Ating was a known leader of CFA. She was very active in protests against AgPet.

This is too much.

I personally knew this people, during a rehabilitation project through Ateneo de Davao University for Typhoon Pablo survivors in our province. It is through them that I learned deeper the harsh impacts of environmental destruction, from simple economic hardships to the most profound ideas and practices to overcome climate change. All they want is to defend their land, the environment from mining plunder as they had enough experience with Typhoon Pablo.

For this brutal state, to defend our land, our livelihood and the environment from plunder is a crime.

Compostela bleeds, but surely this will breed more and more resistance. There are no words and curses enough to describe these state brutalities. (davaotoday.com)

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
comments powered by Disqus