We, the Brothers and Sisters of the Fraternal Order of Heureka and the Sororal Order of Candela, express condolences and sympathy for the farmers of Kidapawan, and hereby condemn and denounce in the strongest sense the violent dispersal of our demonstrating farmers last April 01, 2016 in the City of Kidapawan North Cotabato.
On that date, Filipino farmers gathered and assembled peacefully to air their just plea to our government for aid, not only because they are experiencing hunger due to the foreseen El NiÃ±o phenomenon but also because of an imminent threat of deprivation of livelihood and income. It is an irony, that those who produce food for our country are the ones who are experiencing hunger. Thus, forcing them to go to the streets of Mindanao to exercise their Constitutional guaranteed right to freedom of expression and the right to peaceably assemble and petition the government for redress of grievances.
It is ironic, notwithstanding their just demands for food and agricultural support, the Government through the Philippine National Police hailed them bullets which resulted to the death of 3 Farmers, injuries of many and arrest of not more than 50 of them.
It is our belief that the PNP and the local government of North Cotabato under the leadership of Gov. Emilly Talino-Mendoza exerted more than the allowed counter measures against the demonstrating farmers in breaking their barricade. The use of force especially the discharge of firearms by the government forces is not, will not and cannot be justified in that situation, the law enforcers should have resorted to other non fatal means of dispersing a peaceful assembly.
We call for Justice! Justice for the farmers! Justice for all who justly demand for their rights in Kidapawan City! We demand for the conduct of a transparent and independent investigation regarding the Kidapawan Massacre, and the assurance that this will not be another case of unresolved killing. Fiat justitia ruat caelum.
This 6th day of April 2016, Malolos City, Bulacan.
Copyright (c) 2013 ACCESS TO JUSTICE ADVOCATES (AJA). All rights reserved.
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Office Address: 1F MSU College of Law Bldg.,
MSU Main Campus, Marawi City 9700 Philippines
Mobile No.: (+63) 907 336 7762
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The following are the official pages and e-mail address of the group:
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Through our linkages and with the help of the different Government and Non-government organizations we aim to provide free access to people who need legal assistance.
The University of Mindanao Legal Aid Network (ULAN) is a non-stock, non-profit, and service institution of the University of Mindanao. As a service institution, it provides legal assistance, advocates human rights and social justice, and facilitates the formation of law students for alternative lawyering. It consists of law students and alumni of the College of Legal Education of the University of Mindanao committed to provide an adequate and greater access to justice of the community through its programs.
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