Church leaders blast Aquino


    LEADERS of the Catholic Church have lambasted the Aquino Administration for its callousness, saying it responded with cruelty, not mercy, to thousands of farmers who took to the streets of Kidapawan City to appeal for food aid.

    Three farmers died and scores were injured when protesting farmers and policemen clashed in Kidapawan City in North Cotabato last April 1.

    Manila Auxiliary Bishop Broderick Pabillo said the Aquino administration is answerable for the death of the farmers.

    “This is not the way to react to the grievances of the farmers that the government was not able to address in the first place,” Pabillo added.

    He noted that more than 80 farmers were still unaccounted for or missing days after the violent dispersal.

    “This is not mercy but cruelty. They are blamed in the name of national security and are accused to be led by communists,’ the bishop said.

    “I join my voice in protesting the shooting and the violent dispersal of the protesting farmers in Kidapawan,” he added.

    The government, according to Pabillo, knew beforehand that Mindanao and other parts of the country will be hit by El Niño but did not nothing to assist the affected farmers.

    “The El Nino is not like a typhoon that can make the government unprepared. It had already been forecast two years ago. It has hit the country since September last year. The government has not done anything to address this problem. We had been calling on the government for action for months already,” the prelate said.

    He pointed out that some areas in Mindanao were declared under a state of calamity but the national and local governments did nothing to help alleviate the plight of farmers.

    “Now that they demanded by mass action that their pleas should be heard, they were asking for rice and basic necessities for their farms, they were sent the police and these rained on them beatings and bullets,” Pabillo said.

    “This speaks about the neglect of the Aquino administration of the plight of the poor, the farmers and the lumad [indigenous people]. He is calloused to those who suffer,” Pabillo pointed out.

    Former Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) president and Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Emeritus Oscar Cruz also on Thursday said the Kidapawan incident was a display of government’s insensitivity and lack of respect for the dignity and rights of hungry farmers.

    Cruz likened the bloody Kidapawan dispersal to the Mendiola Massacre which happened during the incumbency of then-President Corazon Aquino, President Aquino’s mother, almost 30 years ago.

    “The Mendiola Massacre was the handiwork of landlords and the president at that time was his mother. As if there was no God,” the archbishop said in an interview with the Church-run Radio Veritas.

    “A hungry stomach needs food. But instead of providing them rice, they were shot. It’s shameful,” he added.

    Cruz expressed belief that ongoing investigations of the violent dispersal will go nowhere.

    Fr. Carlito Garcia, administrator of the Diocese of Kidapawan, said the incident could have been averted had concerned authorities acted with dispatch.

    “This is supposed to be just a matter of decision-making by competent authorities,” he noted. “There’s a calamity fund, but it seems that the people are not benefiting from it.”

    Five kilos of rice
    As the Senate opened its inquiry into the Kidapawan tragedy, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and local government units (LGUs) in Region 12 strengthened their efforts to speed up delivery of assistance to affected families.

    DSWD-Field Office 12 Regional Director Bai Zorahayda Taha met on Thursday with North Cotabato Gov. Emmylou Taliño-Mendoza and Kidapawan City Mayor Joseph Evangelista to identify areas of collaboration.

    They agreed that 150,000 families in the province will each be given five kilos of rice this month.

    Meanwhile, the Field Office will also provide burial assistance of P5,000 each to the families of the farmers who died, and P3,000 to the families of farmers injured in the clash.



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    1. In other more civilized countries, farmers are given government subsidies as support. In the Philippines, needy farmers are given a hail of M16 bullets and brutal beatings from police batons and water cannons.

      This has been the established protocol of the PNP since the onset of the oligarchic Cory Aquino administration that has continued to this day under her haciendero heir, Noynoy.

      No, this incident was not a massacre – critics and apologists will play this down – only 3 farmers were killed and more than a hundred injured. Not a massacre, just a violent and bloody dispersal. If you want a massacre of farmers, here’s a list courtesy of the PNP, the Aquinos and their oligarch allies:

      – Mendiola Massacre: 12 to 13 killed (accounts vary), 39 had gunshot wounds and 12 with minor injuries
      – Hacienda Luisita Massacre: 12 farmers and 2 children killed, hundreds injured

      If there’s one thing farmers here have learned, you protest for food and fair wages, the Aquinos, the landed oligarchs, and the PNP reward you with bullets, pain and death. Yet their cries for succor goes on…

      To the world, the Aquino administration offers deafening silence as to why it allowed the Kidapawan dispersal to happen. Just Aquino showing his true colors, nothing new there.

    2. PNoy is accusing Marcos of human rights violators while he himself had already doing it by neglecting the human rights to live, SAF44 and Kidapawan incidents could have been avoided if PNoy acted immediately.

    3. girlie Bebbeb on

      Sana, Noynoy Aquino will become very, very destitute bago siya mamatay para maranasan niya ang magutom. Wala siyang takot sa Diyos, but not surprising, kasi ang mga grandparents niya sa father side ay incest and killers during world war two.

    4. What kind of a decent burial can you get from 5,000 pesos??? Need at least 15k because you cannot bury the dead in a pot of soil…. are these servants using logic or they are just as dumb as all officials running this pathetic and inutile government….

    5. Only five (5) kilos for this month. A single person can not survive on the five kilos a month. Where is the calamity fund of the national and local government?

    6. Very very sadly…How such a poor leadership displayed by the President and his henchmen and other followers in the region. There’s was the Haiyan Funds that upto this date were not liquidated totally before the president terms of office will end soon.
      There were rumors that some of those funds were earmarked for the Liberal party ticket in this Presidential Election. To Guarantee that despite the immunity. The Calvo President is worried that his nemesis will gang-up on him for Command Responsibility as the Commander in Chief of the Philippines. He led and supervised at Edwin Andrew Air Base in Zamboanga City the SAF Operation in Cotabato. Even to the extend of appointing his loyal Police Chief to take charge in the Confidential Mission that had cost the lives of the SAF 44 special operation group. At the very end he knew he screwed them-up badly and dishonored their arrival at the Nichols Air Base. The Proud Bald President was nowhere in sight to meet them as the Commander In-Chief. And the Arrogant was at the Inauguration of the Mitsubishi Motors. Now, You have all mostly voted for this crankhead. Ask him to go to sulu to proved his manhood again as he was able to play games during the Zamboanga City Siege. Maybe, He could bring with him Mar Roxas to Attack the Abu Sayaf and the MNLF camp in Sulu in-order to release those hostages they are hiding. Go..Go Go…Arm yourself and lead your men once and for all. Get rid of the Abu’s while you’re still the Brave President. We want to hear you’re in Jolo.Siasi,Tawi2 and lastly the Basilan challenge for you.

    7. John Sarerab on

      Baka dito ang sisihin niya ay ang dios kasi dito siya magaling at isa pa’y inuuna niya ang pamumulitika.

    8. Josemakabayan on

      Boss Roxas, again and again your dream of being president is being sabotaged by your friend BS Aquino 3rd.