The ‘Higala sa Lumad’ Network is humbly requesting you to support the displaced Lumad of Misamis Oriental of Mindanao, Philippines, in their fight to return back to their communities by RELEASING A SOLIDARITY STATEMENT. They are now camping outside the Provincial Capitol located in Cagayan de Oro City, and their firm stance and assertion are just and inspiring.
Part of their Unity Statement reads:
“We wish to inform everyone that we would have preferred not to walk another 100 kilometers and sleep on concrete without shelter for more than a week. Our children had already gotten sick with fever, diarrhea, and cough because of the hot and humid weather in the city. We are not used to this place as our lives are connected to the mountains, the forests, rivers, streams –to our ancestral land.
“We wish to inform everyone that we would have preferred to not seem like beggars to the municipal and provincial governments, to the Social and Welfare offices just so we could eat noodles, NFA rice, and porridge, as we are not used to eating these. In fact, we could not sleep properly because we keep on thinking about our homes, our animals, our crops, especially as we have just sown seeds after the long drought had destroyed our farms.
“We wish to inform everyone that the most painful of all that we’ve been through is when some individuals mock us, especially military personnel under the 58th Infantry Battallion of the 4th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army. They have accused us of being armed, of being members of the New People’s Army, and have threatened our peaceful lives. Not satisfied with what they had already done in our communities, they also went after us at the Lagonglong Gym. Who can sleep well when the military, headed by 1st Lt Valleser, who threatened us – gathered us in Camansi, strafed our school when started evacuating, aimed their guns at Juni Cabanlas, and ransacked five of our houses – followed us and camped right in front of the gate of the Lagonglong Gym?”
For the full statement & request for action, please click http://rmp-nmr.org/articles/2016/06/16/state-unity-evacuees-camansi-and-tapol