Lt. Col. Ramil Bitong and troops, BIG LIARS!
Clarizza Singson | Karapatan Negros | Karapatan Negros condemns the false, misleading, malicious and deceitful claim of Lt. Col. Ramil Bitong that together with his troops, they joined the Medical-Relief Mission in Sitio Calabaclabacan, Brgy. Trinidad, Guihulngan City last July 17-18, 2011. The relief and medical mission is part of the NEGROS SOLIDARITY HEALTH AND RELIEF MISSION simultaneously held in Escalante City, Negros Occidental as part of the Filipino American Health Workers Association (FAHWA) annual health service to the rural folk in the Philippines. They were joined as sponsors by the local peasant organization KAUGMAON, Negros Island Health Integrated Program (NIHIP), Visayas Primary Health Care Services, Inc (VPHCS), Community Empowerment Resource Network (CERNET), BAYAN MUNA, Franciscan Mountain Clinics, Iglesia Filipina Independiente together with Karapatan. Mayor Reyes of Guihulngan also joined the activity by providing four (4) vehicles to doctors, dentists, nurses and other development workers. A total of 892 (dental – 80, circumcision – 41, medical – 561, feeding-60, relief-150) farmers benefitted the said activity.
It is a BIG LIE that KARAPATAN and KAUGMAON had cooperated and work with them in the spirit of Oplan Bayanihan. While people’s organizations and their co-sponsors conduct health and relief mission as reponse to local folks’ request and needs, AFP under Oplan Bayanihan conducts military operations in the guise of medical missions in priority areas where they perceived to have strong people’s organizations. KARAPATAN and its allied organizations will never be a part of anti-people programs and plans such as the evil Oplan Bantay Laya, now renamed as Oplan Bayanihan which continue to victimize innocent civilians in the guise of civil military actions. In fact that very day of the Relief Mission, we documented a number of cases of human rights violations and even reported and had it recorded in the barangay that 8 elements of 11th IB had occupied and stayed inside the Calabaclabacan Elementary School during the said activity. A clear violation of the R.A. 7610 that states, public places such as schools should not be used by military forces as barracks. Their presence inside the school violates the said act and the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law.
We are very surprised and dismayed by the claims of the 11th IB that they joined the said activity when in fact, they were never invited. It is a BIG LIE that they provide security assistance, when in fact, the people had reported that beneficiaries from sitio Casanday of barangay Tacpao and Binubohan and 2 sitios, Agpapatao and Balangubang was blocked by the military to the medical mission site. Contrary to what they claim in the newspaper that there is a spirit of bayanihan, their presence brought terror in the lives of the people in Guihulngan City. The people cannot and will never forget the atrocities and violations on the human rights perpetrated by the military, more specifically, by the 11th IB led by Col. Bitong. They should have shame and delikadesa not to claim and glorify themselves that they are in the service of the people. It only shows that they are desperate enough to use the activity for just a mere propaganda for them to look good in public. We cannot compromise the trust of the victims and the people to mingle with the human rights violators.
We stand for the truth and we cannot allow this big lie to spread and mislead the medical mission’s beneficiaries and supporters.
Expose all military lies and atrocities!
Rechannel military budget to health services of the people!
End the culture of impunity!
Prosecute the perpetrators!
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