Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas
Peasant Movement of the Philippines
17 August 2000
In a presscon held in Quezon City, the militant Kilusang Magbubukid ng
Pilipinas (KMP) today said that the Estrada government have once again
exposed his blatant anti-peasant, pro-landlord and realty corporation
stamd by rendering a decision favoring Fil-Estate Realty Corporation in
the controversial Hacienda Looc case.
The Office of the President rendered its decision on the controversial
8,650 hectare agricultural land located at Nasugbu, Batangas last July
5, 2000 signed by Executive Secretary Ronaldo Zamora. The decision
affirmed the Department of Agrarian Reform's approval granting
Fil-Estate's Harbortown project to convert Hacienda Looc into a world
class tourism area but will dislocate about 10,000 farmers from their
KMP chair Rafael Mariano said the Estrada government is filled with real
estate personalities like Press Undersecretary Mike Toledo who is a
former Senior vice-president of Fil-Estate and in in-charge of the
marketing strategy of Fil-Estate. "The reality that Estrada's government is
dominated by realty brokers speaks that there is a hocus focus in
Malacanang's decision," Mariano said.
Mariano also said the Estrada government unabashedly showed its real
anti-poor face and does not hesitate to show his intension not to implement
agrarian reform and turned its head on increasing military operations in
the countryside. "This latest decision of Malacanang clearly shows that
Estrada's government is run by corporate power like the Fil-Estate. As a
consequence, we are also convinced that militarization will intensify to
wreak terror in Hacienda Looc," Mariano added.
Guillermo Bautista, chair of the Ugnayan ng Mamamayan Laban sa
Pamamaslang ng Kalupaan ng Hacienda Looc (Umalpas Ka) said that they
will continue to fight for their rights. "Whatever roadblock Fil-Estate
and the Estrada government wanted to install we will continue to fight
for the achievement of genuine land reform in Hacienda Looc," Bautista
Hacienda Looc is one of the cases to be visited by an International Fact
Finding Mission (IFFM) headed by La Via Campesina, an international
movement of small and middle peasants in more than 63 countries, and
Foodfirst Informations and Actions Network (FIAN) an interational
organization working for the right to feed oneself. The IFFM will be
conducted in the Philippines from August 18-25 this year. It is a part
of La Via Campesina and FIAN International's Global Campaign for
Bautista also called on the IFFM delegates to support the struggle of
the people of Hacienda Looc. "We have no other choice but to bring this
to the attention of the people, especially before our fellow farmers and
sympathisers both in the national and the international community to
support our struggle because it is our children's lives that is now in
serious danger," said Bautista.
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