By Angel De Mesa
LEGAZPI CITY, ALBAY – “Expose and resist the US-Duterte regime’s fascist and militarist scheme,” said Martial Law Survivor Alfredo Mansos, who leads Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN) here, during their Martial Law Protest Thursday.
Mansos survived the restless three consecutive weeks of torture season with blindfolds during Marcos’ Martial Law. He was detained on February 28, 1983 in a military camp located at Muños, Quezon City that lasted for three years.
He reminisced his endurable pain just to survive under the darkest years of Marcos Dictatorship.
In the 45th commemoration of Martial Law, Mansos was with the 1,600 protesters here condemning the threat of President Rodrigo Duterte on its declaration and full implementation of Martial Law nationwide.
Last week Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana told the press that President Duterte might declare nationwide martial law if threatened protests by communists and other leftists against his rule turn violent or disrupt the country.
BAYAN-Albay believes that implementation of Martial law in Mindanao is way too much amid terrorist attacks because of its high tolerance on human rights violations and massive destruction on communities and environment.
According to Mansos, Duterte’s first year term already causes many casualties on human rights violations especially on its war on drugs campaign even without the declaration of martial law.
“Martial law is not a drug solution, it is not a solution to criminality nor corruption, but rather, they need to discuss the root cause of the problem of why there is a war in the Philippines, why there is a conflict in Mindanao, why there has been a MILF, BIFF in Mindanao,” Mansos said.
As the progressive groups here expressed their anger on the skyrocketing victims of extrajudicial killings nationwide, they also anticipated the possibility of repeating the history just like what the Marcos regime has done and implemented.
No to Martial Law, a call for justice
BAYAN-Albay did not expect that among their crowd was a family member of slain and raped victim Laesybil Almonacid calling for justice and expressed that Duterte only justifies the wrong doing of previous administrations.
Laesybil was a 3rd year accountancy student of Bicol University College of Business Economics and Management (BUCBEM) killed during the administration of Benigno Aquino III. It was on November 1, 2011 when she was believed to be raped and killed by a militiamen or soldiers since her body was found just about 40 or 50 meters away from the military detachment.
“We would like to inform the public that the case of Laesybil Almonacid has not yet been resolved. No case was filed, no suspect has been charged, and authorities released nothing at all,” said Laesybil’s aunt, Josefina Almonacid.
Even without martial law, Josefina believes that tolerance on power has been visible at times particularly on authorities. On the case of Laesybil where military was involved, the family fears of the dominance of militarization especially when the Martial Law has been already declared in the country.
“In the Pres. Duterte’s plan to declare a martial law, I think that cases like this will only grow stronger. Those whom they want to kill, they will kill it. It increases its strength to create new crimes, abuses especially to those persons whom they see are fighting and resisting,” said Josefina.
According to Mansos, Duterte idolizes Marcos so much up to the point that he will adapt Marcos’ programs and actions without thinking about the welfare of the people.
Mansos is still vigilant in resisting and fighting plans against the martial law restoration Despite the torture during Marcos’ martial law as one of the victims.
Meanwhile, ACT-Teachers Bicol Union strongly opposes the historical revisionism which compromises the education of the young Filipinos and students.
“The martial law is no longer in the Philippine History, what is placed is that Marcos run the country well and the lives of Filipinos are prosperous way back then. Everything is a lie in the history of the philippines, to the books given to DEPED today,” said Nicanor Sambitan of ACT-Teachers union in Bicol.
“Our history is being revised gradually by the revisionists. All the martial law malpractices in philippine history have not been taught, but instead Philippine history has been changed in which teachers strongly opposed,” Sambitan added.
Militant groups commit themselves to be vigilant on the next steps of the ‘US-Duterte’ regime not just on the martial declaration but also to the increasing number of human rights violations. (BaretangBikolnon.com)