The continuing injustice in Luisita and why armed revolution rages on

Various groups have condemned the recent arrest of farmworkers of Hacienda Luisita and the continuing harassment being done against them in the course of their continuing fight for land ownership and justice. The family of President Benigno Aquino III should stop the harassmentagainst the farmworkers and immediately distribute Hacienda Luisita. Various sectors should be called upon to support the Luisita farmworkers and oppose this latest case of injustice done against them. Last March 27, seven farmers were arrested by the local police last at around 3:00 pm. Among the arrested were two barangay leaders and two minors. The farmers were attacked and were arrested without warrants by local police forces while violently evicting the farmers out of a lot being claimed by Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC). The Supreme Court (SC) late last year already ordered the distribution of the said estate which is owned by President Aquino’s family. The government has yet to implement the distribution order as the powerful Cojuangco-Aquino clan moves to prevent such distribution with powers at their disposal. The “RCBC land” is among the contested lots. The Cojuangco-Aquinos have filed a motion before the SC to stop the distribution, and in case the court rules otherwise, they are asking for an astronomical amount — P10 billion for “just compensation.” This is done as the President and his allies have doggedly pursued the impeachment complaint against Supreme Court Chief justice Corona. There have also been news that American troops have been allowed to stay in Luisita and that arrangements for Balikatan exercises in the area are being set. What is happening in Luisita illustrates exactly why people in the countryside are driven to take up arms. The government should not be surprised that the New People’s Army (NPA), today commemorating their 43rd anniversary, continues to gain strength. The lack of genuine land reform, prevailing social oppression and injustice are inciting the people to take the path of armed revolution. The NPA, the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), has been waging a war to overthrow the current state ruled by “foreign, elite and landed classes” to push for a “People’s Democratic Government,” in which free land distribution is central to its program. Despite several military oplans, each one promising to annihilate the NPA and crush the revolution, the armed movement continues to grow because landlessness, poverty, hunger and inequality, especially in the rural areas prevail.
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