In the name of their land
Instead of tackling RH Bill for this blog post, I choose to deal with a far underrated yet significant issue of the Casiguran farmers’ March Against the APECO in Aurora, Eastern Luzon. (RH has already many supporters, I don’t think I need to speak for its passage) 🙂
I just stumbled upon the issue yesterday, while watching the live dialogue (or should I say, MONOLOGUE) of the President Noynoy Aquino himself and the 120 Casiguran Farmers who walked 350 KM from Aurora for 18 days in a march to protest against 12, 92 hectare project called the the Aurora Pacific Economic Zone and Freeport Authority (APECO)
APECO is sponsored by the leading politician in the area, Senator Angara who said that APECO’s goals is to help the province catch up with the economic and social development of the rest of Luzon by providing jobs, livelihood, investment and tourism.
And my cry: Why just develop a capable agrarian project or support the farmers and fishermen than try to build up a hub of business with NO proper transportation from the capital Manila? goes unheard.
Aquino doesn’t call for a complete scrapping of the project. Instead, he instructed NEDA to make a review about it and called for the protesters to keep an open mind about the benefits of the said project.
(My goodness, why not first talk with the tenants from your own hometown in Hacienda Luisita, Tarlac and ask them about the ‘benefits’ they received from the land-grabbing by your family clan?)
Aquino believes that the APECO will build a business hub and boost livelihood projects in that region where the project will start.
(Are you aware that this part of Aurora is a NATIONAL PARK? A place of conservation and protection. Not to mention that AURORA is the first frontier against the turbulent weather of the Pacific. It’s the EDSA or highways of Typhoons. Are you seriously going to build infrastructures just for the ‘Bagyo’s’ to destroy these?)
AND DON’T GET ME STARTED ABOUT THE LEGAL ISSUES SURROUNDING APECO
In a remark of Agrarian Reform Secretary Virgilio de los Reyes, Aquino said that ‘if there’s an idle land, you should occupy and own it?’
(Oh my God, these lands are part of the Ancestral Domain of these farmers! Their ancestors have been tilling over it, crying blood and tears over it, for hundreds of years! And now you, HACIENDEROS, are going to take it away from them? Haciendero president will always be a haciendero)
Another supporter of the APECO that if many farmers are against the APECO, why is there only 120 marchers? It meant that majority of the Aurora residents approve of APECO, right?(About 3000 farmers will be affected by the APECO and the government promised to relocate them. Dozens of fisherfolk families have been displaced by the creation of APECO’s airport without any kind of relocation, and numerous farmers have been deceived by APECO’s land buyers. Of course, without proper education, they are easily deceived by APECO officials on their promises of these and that. 120 FARMERS WOULDN’T MARCH FOR 18 DAYS IN 350+ KILOMETERS IF THEY ONLY GET SUPPORT FROM THE MINORITY. TO COMPLETE THIS AMBITIOUS EFFORT, THEY NEED TO BE CONVINCED THAT THEY ARE FIGHTING FOR A CAUSE WORTH FIGHTING FOR THE SAKE OF THEIR FELLOWMEN) (MR PRESIDENT, please, you don’t have to compromise the lives of many and the environment for this shady project. Only the politicians will benefit from these. Don’t think like a HACIENDERO. My patience with you is growing little by little and I’m almost beginning to get convinced that you are no DIFFERENT than the past presidents before you.) DON’T MAKE YOUR REPUTATION ANY WORSE AS IT IS. (AND WHY DO THE TRADITIONAL MEDIA HAVE NO NEWS ABOUT THIS????!!!!
Posted on December 12, 2012, in It's More Fun in the Philippines, rant, reflections and tagged Angara, APECO, Aurora, Casiguran Farmers, IT'S OBVIOUS I'M ANGRY, land grabbing, Luzon, Noynoy Aquino, Philippines. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.