PNP arrests 7 peasants in Pangasinan

21 January 2012

Download PDF
Seven peasants were arrested in Pangasinan on January 12 after they prevented police from fencing off their farm lands in Bayambang, Pangasinan.

The farmers were identified as Rodolfo Natividad, Emeterio Paningbatan, Felipe Caro, Bernardito Dizon, Rudy Peralta, Rodrigo Asuncion and Ludivico Mejia—all members of Ulopan Na Umbaley Ed Camp Gregg Military Reservation.

According to the Alyansa ng mga Magbubukid sa Gitnang Luzon (AMGL), the seven peasants were arrestd after they stopped authorities from fencing off close to 300 hectares of farm lands that they had long been tilling in Barangay Bical Sur in Bayambang. Pangasinan Gov. Amado Espino ordered the farm lands fenced off to give way to the construction of a private resort in the area. The AMGL added that since the Department of Environment and Natural Resources had declared this part of the Camp Gregg Military Reservation public land, no one had the right to claim it. The Cojuangco-Aquino family has reportedly shown interest in the land.

Four of the farmers were released the same day but the remaining three were held at the police station and charged with attempted murder.

Meanwhile, the Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation has demanded the arrest of 22 peasant leaders and farm workers of Hacienda Luisita for allegedly occupying illegally a lot owned by RCBC. The Alyansa ng mga Manggagawang Bukid sa Hacienda Luisita (AMBALA) said that the occupation was legitimate since the more than 500-hectare lot owned by RCBC had been idle for a long time. AMBALA added that it had also filed a petition with the Department of Agrarian Reform to revoke the land-use conversion and distribute the land instead to AMBALA members.