Coal-Free Bataan Movement: Appeal for Support for Ate Gloria Capitan

Secretariat: c/o NFBM #1066-B, Emerald St., Taglesville Subd., Balanga City, Bataan

5th July 2016

Dear Friends,

          We are Coal-Free Bataan Movement, writing to seek your earnest support for our slain leader, environmentalist and anti-coal activist, shot and killed by two still unidentified motorcycle-riding men in Brgy. Lucanin, Mariveles, Bataan in her home last Friday, July 1, 2016.

          Ate Gloria is 57 years old, mother to 5 children and a doting grandmother to 18 grandchildren. Her husband, Efren Capitan who suffered a mild stroke in the past is a barangay councilor at present.

          Ate Gloria is a warm and kind-hearted woman to every colleague in the anti-coal movement. Her positive character and perseverance has brought hope in the struggle of the people of Bataan against the huge enemy that is coal. The effect of her untimely death will surely be felt in the anti-coal movement in the province.

          “Titigil lang ako pag pikit na ang mata ko! Ano pa ba ang magagawa ko e patay na ako. Hindi ito para sa akin, kundi para sa mga apo ko, masakit ang loob ko kapag nakikita ko silang nagkakasakit.” [I will only stop if my eyes are closed! What else can I do, I’m already dead... This is not for my sake, but for my grandchildren, my heart breaks whenever I see them get sick!]

          As if knowing that her life is under threat, these were the brave words that Ate Gloria Capitan used to describe her struggle against the coal storage/stockpile in her village in Brgy. Lucanin, Mariveles, Bataan.

Standing Up Against Dirty Energy

          Gloria Capitan chose to speak up against the anti-coal stockpile and coal-fired power plant in their community at the height of overwhelming local government support for coal energy and a national policy favoring the same.

          Bataan being a peninsula, covers 137,298 hectares and has a population of around 760 thousand and is home to two coal-fired power plants and two open coal storage facilities.

          A 140 MW owned by Petron in Limay town and a 600MW plant owned by Ayala and Sithe Global in the town of Mariveles. Both open coal storage facilities are in Mariveles. One open coal storage is in Barangay Sisiman which is owned by Seasia Nectar Port Services- a tandem of Filipino owned Seasia Logistic Philippines and London-based Nectar Group.

          The other storage is found in Barangay Lucanin where Ate Glo resides, and is owned by Limay Bulk and Handling Terminals and Sea Front Shipyard Port Port Services Inc.

          Aside from these facilities, expansion is well underway: 1,200 for GN Power Mariveles, 600MW San Miguel Global Power in Limay (additional 300MW is undergoing pre-permit stage) and another 600MW by San Miguel in Mariveles town.

          Together with Coal-Free Bataan Movement she led her community in the campaign by spearheading a petition, filing cases as well as other public actions directed against the open coal storage owned by Limay Bulk and Handling Terminals Inc. located inside the Sea Front Shipyard Port Services in Brgy. Lucanin, Mariveles, Bataan.

          The open coal storage is believed to be the main culprit of the massive dust and pollution the community is experiencing skin allergies and other diseases. Residents describe that the pay loaders used to move the coal stir up so much dust and debris that an alarming spike in upper respiratory infection cases in adults and children have been recorded as well as destruction of the coastlines and seabed.

          Ate Gloria’s life, though short, left an indelible mark in advancing the welfare of the people of Bataan in the struggle against coal and has contributed in building a broader base of support at the community level. Though there were trying times where her integrity was put to test as tempting bribes were dangled to weaken the resolve of a self-employed grandmother, she fought against this. Her steel resolve was also marked when the bribes gave way to subtle and overt threats against her and her companions in the pursuit of the greater good.

          It is in this light that we seek out your help during this difficult time.

          Please extend a hand to assist for Ate Gloria Capitan’s funeral service, assistance to the family (material, services like psycho social intervention as well as financial) as well as contribute to the seed fund for the Justice for Gloria Capitan Campaign.

          We welcome whatever support you could extend to us. You may send your support through the account of Nuclear-Free Bataan Movement (NFBM), the secretariat for Coal-Free Bataan Movement. Our account number is 80883-0413-67 Bank of the Philippine Islands, Balanga branch.

          For further queries and details, please feel free to contact us at email address nfbmsecretariat@yahoo.com or kilusan.bataan@gmail.com mobile numbers +639478922831 or at the address stated above. Thank you. Mabuhay kayo!

In Solidarity,

Derek Cabe
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Coordinator
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                NFBM/Coal-Free Bataan Movement                                                                                                                                                                                                                              KILUSAN-Bataan

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