January 22, 2012
For Reference: Jay Calaguing, UMA information officer
Contact No: 0929174551
Farm workers cautioned on DAR’s real intention in Hacienda Luisita
Manila – The mother federation of the Hacienda Luisita farm workers cautioned its provincial chapter the farm worker alliance Alyansa ng mga Manggagawang Bukid sa Asyenda Luisita on DAR’s real motive.
The Unyon ng mga Manggagawa sa Agrikultura today asked AMBALA’s full vigilance against the ongoing grass root orientation initiated by the Department of Agrarian Reform in Hacienda Luisita “We call the 6000 members of AMBALA to exert all efforts to guard the land that they’ve fought for with blood and sweat” said Rodel Mesa, UMA secretary general.
“It took almost five decades to get a favorable decision from the high court; it’s unacceptable to mandate us to pay for it. Land reform is not like a bitter pill to swallow” Mesa asserted.
He also said “Our position is clear since day one of our struggle; free land distribution of Hacienda Luisita, no more, no less.
“The issue here in not how to pay up the Cojuangco-Aquino’s but the distribution of Hacienda Luisita, we are worried that DAR would carry the sentiments of the president and his relatives that is obviously against the distribution of the land to the farm worker beneficiaries” Mesa laments.
As to the CARP implementation on Hacienda Luisita; the UMA leader said; “We don’t have any intention of paying amortization to the bank nor to the Cojuangco-Aquino’s not even a cent”.
“CARP holds only the Cojuangco-Aquino’s desire; to put on standby the actual distribution of Hacienda Luisita because of its conditions. Does it mean that when we cannot pay up for compensation and amortization they will not distribute the land to us? Mesa asked.
The farm worker leader also said “That is why we are asserting for free land distribution because the existing land reform law does not serve our interest and aspiration; DAR should make this landmark 14-0 decision of the high court to distribute Hacienda Luisita without hesitation or second thought”.
”The farm workers are ready to undertake any task that DAR would ask for the speedy distribution of Hacienda Luisita. But we are warning them that if they used this occasion to pursue Aquino’s bid to water down the court decision in favor of his boss, we will not hesitate to oppose and expose their vile attempt. AMBALA and other progressive organizations inside Hacienda Luisita will always on the lookout and ready to mobilized its forces anytime to abate any maneuvers” Mesa ended.