Victims of State Repression joins nationwide fasting to free political prisoners
The pro-democracy policies of the Aquino government have become a total parody of the continuing declining state of the masses. Its obsession in its own “matuwid na daan” strategy is a mere hypocritical term to defraud people the real deteriorating state of the country, the dire need of the people to basic socio-political reforms and to cover the dissatisfaction of the Administration’s continuing plunging ratings of its performance of supposedly good governance.
More importantly, Its indifference over the human rights situation, none different than his predecessor, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, has made him an exact opposite epitome of pro-democracy. Malacanang’s attitude towards political prisoners is demonstrated by its lack of interest over any political prisoners and boldly stating that there are no political prisoners in the country. Such statement is a blatant display of an iron fist without any regard for justice and peace. Such statement is an exact sentiment declared by the dictator Ferdinand Marcos during the martial law era.
In strengthening the movement to free all political prisoners, SELDA (Samahanng Ex-Detainees Laban saDetensyon at Aresto) and KARAPATAN (Alliance for the Advancement of People’s Rights) – Northern Mindanao, are launching its campaign by demanding a General, Unconditional and Omibus Amnesty (GUOA) as the most expeditious way to release all who have been arbitrarily arrested and detained for exercising their right to pursue their political beliefs. As of March 31, 2012, there are 363 political prisoners (PPs) in various detention centers and prisons all over the Philippines, three of them are in the Misamis Oriental Jail.
More recently, last July 12 (thurs), Alexander Yamson, a suspected NPA member, was nabbed at around 2:30pm by composite team of CIDG, PNP and intelligence unit on the basis of a warrant issued with trump up criminal charges against him, ironically not for political offenses. He is now languishing in jail.
In a statement by political detainees Pedro Heyrana Codaste and Fortunato Hebia of Malayabalay City Jail, they condemned the Administration as to how they were persecuted and prosecuted as common criminals. “The struggle for national liberation and democracy is an imprescriptible and inalienable tight. It is guaranteed by natural, moral and universal laws of humanity. Even the American Declaration of independence clearly stipulated that it is right to rebel against an unjust and oppressive system. Thus, it is wrong, very very wrong to align us revolutionaries on the same place with common criminals for what we seek is to ensure that the political status of our country be free from any foreign interference and domination.”
A series of nationally-coordinated activities will be launched, led by the political prisoners themselves and SELDA, to further make its mark to the people. The highlight of this campaign is the solidarity week-long fasting on July 16 – 23, 2012. The week-long solidarity fast will be held in different urban centers in the country by family, friends and human rights groups supported by different sectors calling for the release of the political prisoners. The ten (10) political prisoners in the Northern Mindanao Region are also joining the fast- 5 detained in Provincial Jail of Misamis Oriental, 2 in BJMP Malaybalay and 3 in BJMP Valencia.
The Paaralang-Bayan, an education-cultural forum with the detainees will also be held in the Misamis Oriental Provincial Jail on July 16, 2012 from 2:00 PM to 5:00 pm. This will further impart knowledge of the present human rights situation of the country, the languishing conditions of the political prisoners and its quest for justice and freedom.
Hebia and Codaste also expressed its disappointment over the Aquino administration’s apathy, stubbornness and lack of initiative in listening and acting upon the political detainee’s situation. They said “If Zionist Israel did release its more than a thousand Palestinian political prisoners, why can’t Aquino release the three hundred and sixty-three (363) political prisoners who were many of them arbitrarily arrested? If Burma’s military-backed president did release the more or less six hundred fifty nine(659) political prisoners, why can’t Aquino do the same to three hundred sixty0three (363) political prisoners in the country and detention centers. Aquino ought to listen to the stinging criticism of his administration’s dismal performance by the Universal Periodic Review, a mechanism established by the Human Rights Council of the United Nations (UN), in prosecuting human rights abusers.”
For Reference Karapatan CDO Karapatan_cdo@yahoo.com