Assassination of unionist proved EJK persists under PNoy

The militant regional trade union center Pagkakaisa ng Manggagawa sa Timog Katagalugan (PAMANTIK-KMU) condemns in utmost terms the killing of Celino Baccay, organizer and board member of an independent union in Maeno Giken, a Japanese-owned company in First Cavite Industrial Estate (FCIE), Dasmariñas, Cavite.

Around 10PM on March 8, two (2) unidentified men ambushed and killed Baccay, 31, while aboard his motorcycle on his way home from work in Barangay Langkaan, Dasmariñas. Doctors in De La Salle University Medical Center pronounced Baccay dead on arrival at around 10:45PM.

The death of Baccay proved that extra-judicial killings continue under the US-Aquino regime.

Under Arroyo’s Oplan Bantay Laya, most targets and victims of extra-judicial killings (EJK) from the trade union movement were leaders and members of KMU-affiliated unions. Towards the end of her term and during the early months of the succeeding Aquino administration, EJK victims included independent unions such as those from EMI-Yazaki, Takata, Calamba Water District, and recently the case of Baccay of Maeno Giken.

With Noynoy Aquino’s Oplan Bayanihan, militarization persists in areas where workers’ unions and mass organizations actively exist. In the last week of February, elements of the 202nd Infantry Brigade of the Philippine Army were deployed in Cabuyao, Laguna in the guise of conducting community service.

The Aquino administration only continued in his Oplan Bayanihan the old scheme of suppressing the people, attuned with the imperialist US’s “war on terror”. This means the completion of destroying the basic rights and intensifying the suppression of the people’s clamor for genuine social change.

The pretext that the US-Aquino regime lined unionism with terroristic activities legitimizes the vilification and demonization campaigns against, surveillance, and targets for liquidation of leaders and activists whose only aim is to establish and struggle for the right to union.###

DoLE shrouded also with anomalies and corruption, Senate needs to urgently investigate

While investigations are on-going regarding the anomalies and corruption in the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), the regional labor center Pagkakaisa ng Manggagawa sa Timog Katagalugan (PAMANTIK-KMU) calls on the Philippine Senate to also pay attention on labor cases. Particularly, Senate investigation is urged on the anomalies and corruption in the Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE) which is involved in anti-labor policies and decisions.

Earlier in 2003, a case was presented to the House of Representatives, thru Anakpawis Partylist, involving former DoLE Patricia Santo Tomas in her Switzerland and Italy trip funded by multinational company Nestlé.

Workers also complain of the outright and one-sided issuance of Assumption of Jurisdiction by the DoLE secretary and other policies suppressing the right to strike as experienced by workers in companies like Nestlé Philippines Cabuyao, Nissan Motor Philippines, JacLiner, Aichi Forging, Toyota Motors, Purefoods Flour Mills, etc.

DoLE remains either in its no action stance or reverses favourable decisions for workers. The department also has no teeth in obliging capitalists to comply with favourable decisions issued by the Supreme Court.

Like the reeking corruption in the AFP, the workers and the people have not enough data as to the depth and extent of the anomalies in DoLE and the culture of corruption in the country exploited and benefited by capitalists. Not for reasons of “national interest” and “industrial peace”, workers are certain that DoLE and AFP officers receive a large sum of money in order to implement anti-worker decisions and harass workers, respectively.

Therefore, it is urgent that Senate should investigate the anomalies and corruption in DoLE, including those involved capitalists.###