CDPC DEMANDS JUSTICE FOR THE VICTIMS OF SEPTEMBER 1
LIANGGA SURIGAO DEL SUR MASSACRE
JUSTICE FOR EMERITO, DIONEL AND AURELIO!
The CDPC (Center for Development Programs in the Cordillera) network strongly condemns the inhumane murder of Emerito “Emuk” Samarca, Executive Director of Alternative Learning Center for Agriculture and Livelihood Development (ALCADEV), Dionel Campos, Chairperson of MAPASU (Persevering Struggle for the Next Generation), and his cousin Aurelio Sinzo. The massacre of the three colleagues in alternative development work in a remote and deprived community of Liangga, Surigao Del Sur on September 1, 2015 is a very recent act of genocide because it systematically eliminate Indigenous People. This is part of fascism by the Aquino government; Oplan Bayanihan.
As NGO partner in advocating pro-people alternative development, ALCADEV since its establishment in 2004 has been providing educational assistance to as well as enhancing sustainable agricultural practices among lumad communities in the CARAGA region through its partnership with People’s Organizations represented by MAPASU. Emerito or Emuk to many and Dionel together with community members and other leaders like Aurelio have gone through many difficulties and trials in their struggles to reach the better living situation that they had achieved before the massacre happened.
Alcadev, successful running alternative school is one of the fruits of the struggles, unity and perseverance of the Lumads in Liangga Surigao Del Sur. ALCADEV and MAPASU was given recognition by the national government through the Department of Education, Culture, and Sports (DECS) for its noble achievement in literacy program for the lumad people.Even with such recognition, they continuously faced threats for their lives and vilification from the government through the Armed Forces of the Philippines and para-military groups (MAGAHAT/BAGANI FORCES) assigned in the area until this extra-judicial killings of these 3 leaders and champions of the Lumads.
re development programs and activist development workers in the country are experiencing the same fate. State security forces try to stop and hinder pro- people development programs and efforts by the communities by filing trumped-up charges against community development activist workers and human rights defenders and advocates.
We are deeply saddened and angered for losing collegues in the advancement of peoples’ rights to genuine development, by this systemic vicious act of the state against development activist workers and human rights defenders and advocates.
As we mourn and turn over our anger to positive action, we join hands with partner NGOs and POs and other civil society organizations at the local level and in the international community to demand for immediate justice for Emerito, Dionel, Aurelio, and to all victims of this horrible and inhumane act. These injustices and impunity will bring more people to rise and fight for peoples’ rights and genuine development of the people.