DAVAO CITY – Labor group Kilusang Mayo Uno picketed the Justice Department along Padre Faura in Manila this morning to call for the junking of a trumped-up case against its union organizers.
The labor group said Justice Sec. Leila de Lima, who is expected to resign from her post any time soon to run in the 2016 elections, should “immediately junk the case, which is also responsible for the issuance of arrest warrants against two labor leaders.”
Jerome Adonis, secretary general of KMU said the Ifugao case on April 2012, which accuses the defendants of participating in an ambush carried out by rebel group New People’s Army in Ifugao province in April 2012, “is clearly fabricated and should be junked right away.”
“Four union organizers have been in jail and two labor leaders face the threat of being arrested because of an obviously fabricated case. De Lima should junk this most unjust case before resigning or before even thinking of running for a higher government position,” said Adonis.
Adonis said the military official who serves as a witness to the case claims that he was able to identify the defendants because the latter shouted their names before firing their guns in the said ambush.
He also claimed that the defendants carried out another ambush in Camarines Sur province four days after the ambush in Ifugao.
“This case is based on the most absurd claims by the military. It should not be allowed to exist as a case any minute longer,” Adonis added.
In jail since December 2012 and January 2013 are Randy Vegas and Raul Camposano, union organizers of public sector union center Confederation for Unity, Recognition and Advancement of Government Employees or Courage, Rene Boy Abiva, union organizer of ACT Teachers Partylist in Cagayan Valley, and Virgilio Corpus, organizer of militant drivers’ group PISTON in the same region.
Adonis said arrest warrants have been issued against Roy Velez, chairperson of the KMU chapter in Metro Manila, and Amelita Gamara, deputy secretary-general of the said KMU regional chapter. (davaotoday.com)