MAC/20: Mines and Communities

National Coalition for the Protection of Workers’ Rights Press Statement

Published by MAC on 2005-10-11

National Coalition for the Protection of Workers’ Rights Press Statement

Stop the Killings! Stop Political Repression!

11 October 2005

The National Coalition for the Protection of Workers Rights (NCPWR) strongly condemns the successive killings of trade union leaders and workers as well as the increasing incidents of abductions, arrests, detentions and surveillance in their ranks. On September alone, three workers were brutally killed.

Last September 13, Dante Teotino of Schneider Packaging Workers Union was shot dead at the picket line of their factory while they were preparing for a symposium. On September 22, Diosdado “Ka Fort” Fortuna, President of Nestle Workers’ Union (United Filipro Employees) and PAMANTIK-KMU was shot dead in front of Sagara Plastics Manufacturing Co. A day after Ka Fort’s burial on September 29, Victoria “Vicky” Samonte, president of the Andres Soriano College Employees Union and vice-president of KMU-CARAGA was stabbed dead.

On October 7, Rolando Mariano, former President of the Tarlac Electric Co. Employees Union and Bayan Muna Municipal Coordinator, was gunned down. Yesterday, Tony Cuison, former KMU National Council member and President of the Atlas Mining Corporation employees union in Cebu was shot by still unidentified assailants and is still in critical condition.

The initial investigations of organizations under NCPWR reveal that these brutal killings and attacks against workers were committed by members of the Philippine National Police and Armed Forces of the Philippines. Terrorism could not come from those who criticize repressive government policies or from the ranks of the victims. It could only come from those whose interests are threatened and in a position to carry out systematic and orchestrated killings.

We therefore register our condemnation against the state terrorism and fascism espoused by the Arroyo government. President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, who is continuously hounded by the broad unity of sectors demanding for her resignation or removal from Malacañang, implements the bloody horror of an undeclared martial rule. We believe that the Arroyo regime is responsible for the widespread killings of union leaders, members and ordinary workers nationwide.

The NCPWR, therefore, calls on the House of Representatives to hold immediate inquiries on the heightening political killings among trade union leaders and members in the country. The NCPWR will also lead in the filing of cases against the perpetrators of these dastardly acts at the Commission on Human Rights, International Labor Organization and United Nations Human Rights Commission.

The NCPWR no longer wants another leader or worker dead, the counting must end and justice should be served immediately.

National Coalition for the Protection of Workers’ Rights
C/o Center for Trade Union and Human Rights
Room 702 CULMAT Building 127 E. Rodriguez Sr. Avenue Cubao, Quezon
telefax no.(02) 7210241
email address: ncpwr@tri-isys.com

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