Anakpawis Partylist: Aquino, DAR to blame on escalating unrest in Hacienda Luisita

statementParty-list group Anakpawis today slammed the continuing fencing of farm lands by the Tarlac Development Corp (TADECO), owned by Pres. Aquino and his relatives. Anakpawis said that Pres. Aquino and the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) should be blamed if violence erupts as they provoke unrest with the latest fencing of at least 100 hectares of farm land mainly planted to palay by 81 farm worker beneficiaries.

According to the Unyon ng mga Manggagawa sa Agrikultura or UMA, armed state agents are already deployed in Brgy. CutCut Hacienda Luisita purportedly to assist TADECO private security personnel conducting the fencing. Farm workers have been tilling these lands for foodcrops since 2005.

As of press time, UMA said that fully-armed state personnel composed of 15 police plus an 8-man SWAT team are presently assisting TADECO security men in fencing 100 hectares of agricultural land in Barangay Cutcut. Police officers include P/INSP. GALICIA, SPO3 BALOT, SPO3 GARCIA, SPO1 ABELLA & PO2 BERNARDO of PNP Tarlac.

“Anakpawis condemns in the highest degree these brazen and criminal acts of the Aquino-Cojuangco clan against farm workers of Hacienda Luisita. This animosity of Aquino and his relatives reveals they are hell-bent in preserving their hold in Hacienda Luisita,” said Anakpawis party-list representative Fernando Hicap

‘”For decades, the presidents’ family has been consistent law breakers resulting in years of legal struggle for Luisita’s ownership. Despite the court’s unanimous decision to award Luisita to the farm workers, it continues to twist the law using Pres. Aquino’s position and DAR to justify its land grabbing escapade” Hicap added

Hicap also said that “Only in this country can you witness farmer beneficiaries being charged of different unlawful acts despite their right to the lands that should already be awarded to them. In addition, state forces are being used to protect the illegal fencing activity of the Cojuangco-Aquinos. This is a very disheartening and abhorring fact”.

Yesterday, TADECO security personnel attacked and injured a Luisita farm worker leader. UMA reported that Rudy Corpuz of Brgy Cutcut suffered head injuries due to the mauling.

The party-list lawmaker expresses outrage on the silence of the DAR in the recent incidents. He said that while DAR proudly announces the completion of supposed distribution of Hacienda Luisita, in reality the contention continues as TADECO’s non-stop land grabbing activities remain unchecked despite the farm workers’ different appeals, opposition and protests.

“If they can’t do their job, they might as well resign — from the DAR chief up to his under secretaries, assistants and other useless regional directors. Let the beneficiaries do their jobs for them” He further said

“Anakpawis is urging Luisita farm workers to fight and oppose the continuing aggressive, illegal and immoral action of Cojuangco-Aquinos. They should not stop organizing their ranks and show their collective strength to oppose TADECO’s land grabbing” Hicap concluded ###

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March 27, 2014

For reference: Anakpawis party-list representative Fernando Hicap

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