So, you see folks, we the citizenry must strive to prevent Hugpong from gaining nine (9) more Senate seats this May 2019; because if they do – we might as well say goodbye to the Republic we hold dear, as we know it.”
With the growing protests and issues surrounding the Chico River Pump Irrigation Project (CRPIP), a joint committee of the Regional Development Council Cordillera was forced to urge the proponent to halt the construction operations.
Apart from the onerous loan agreement, other controversies continue to surface in relation to the P4.3 billion Chico River Pump Irrigation Project (CRPIP). For this project, the first and biggest soft loan package offered by China to the Philippines, the Duterte government has trampled the principles of free and prior informed consent (FPIC) and thus the rights of indigenous peoples.
The recent clashes between the PNP and the NPA in the Mountain Province again put the issue of the use of anti-personnel explosives in the limelight with the government accusing the rebels of violating International Humanitarian Law. But are all anti-personnel explosives prohibited under the Ottawa Convention? Are the NPA bound to adhere to formal and customary laws of war?
Most reports provided the basic information about the clashes, enough to inform the readers of what transpired. However, straight news that dwells only on the firefight and the casualties tends to create further division among the people. It leaves a data gap on the circumstances that caused the events and the reasons why the war in the countryside continue to rage.
Before the controversial Chico River Pump Irrigation Project of the National Irrigation Administration (NIA), there was the Banaoang Pump Irrigation Project (now Banaoang Pump Irrigation System or BPIS) in Ilocos Sur. A facility funded and built by the Chinese government that can provide added and solid ground why people should be concerned of the CRPIP loan agreement.
Igorot activist Joanna Patricia Kintanar Cariño, scion of Ibaloi chieftain Mateo Cariño is this year’s recipient of the Gwangju Prize for Human Rights. She is the first Filipino conferred with the honor by May 18 Memorial Foundation, one of the largest human rights group in South Korea.
Baguio Water District General Manager Salvador Royeca reminded politicians to be mindful of the water issue in the city not only during the campaign period but as part of their governance agenda when elected.
A thousand farmers joined the Anakpawis provincial assembly in Cagayan province and renewed their pledge to support the pro-poor and pro-farmer platform of the party-list in defiance of the intensified police and military red-baiting against the group.
In a press conference on April 4, the dean of the University of the Cordilleras College of Nursing Judith Magwilang together with officials of the Philippine Nurses Association (PNA) asserted that nurses or anybody for that matter, fighting for just wages and stable jobs and advocating peace do not deserve to be vilified nor be associated with any armed groups.
The BPO Industry Employees Network (BIEN) Baguio Chapter appealed to local candidates to support the passage of the proposed ordinance to protect BPO employees.
Despite the intensified threats, red-tagging and vilification against progressive groups and activists, youth groups in Baguio City are not deterred, and are finding ways to fight back.