#Manilakbayan: Lumad to march against 'gov't abuses'
MANILA, Philippines – As part of their ongoing protests against the recent spate of killings of their leaders, members of the Lumad and organizations supporting them are walking to call for justice and peace on Friday, November 13.
#Manilakbayan is a series of demonstrations held in Manila that come as a result of the increasing militarization in Mindanao and the human rights violations against the indigenous peoples of the area. The participants, called Manilakbayanis, have journeyed from their homes in Mindanao to Manila to have their voices heard.
Individuals and groups from various sectors have come out in support of the Lumad’s plight.
Campouts, called “Kampuhan,” and rallies have been staged in the University of the Philippines (UP) Diliman, Camp Aguinaldo, Camp Crame, the Department of Education (DepEd) central office, and the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) central office to call out the different agencies the Lumad and their supporters believe to be involved in the persecution of their people.
In each location they condemned the attacks against them and demanded justice and accountability. The military and DepEd have both issued statements denying any involvement in the violence against the Lumad.
The march on Friday, “Walk with the Lumad,” starts at 9 am in Liwasang Bonifacio.
For one week, the Lumad camped out in the UP Diliman campus. Students, professors, and other concerned individuals joined them in support of their cause. (READ: #Manilakbayan: UP Diliman welcomes 700 Lumad from Mindanao)
Davaoeño artists Maan Chua and Popong Landero stand for Lumads. #StopLumadKillings
Camp Crame and Camp Aguinaldo
On November 9, the Lumad marched from the People Power monument to the Philippine National Police’s headquarters at Camp Crame, then headed to the AFP headquarters at Camp Aguinaldo. They held a noise barrage outside the AFP’s gates by beating their palms against it, calling the military out for their alleged links. (READ: Center for Lumad studies launched in Manila)
Because of the department’s Memorandum 221, series 2013, which Save Our Schools, one of the NGOs supporting Manilakbayan, believes “emboldened” the military to commit more intense activities against them and in higher numbers, they issued an ultimatum giving Education Secretary Armin Luistro 3 days to repeal the memo.
Members of the police continually reminded them to end their protest by the 11th at noon, a move SALINLAHI secretary-general Kharlo Manano said was the result of the upcoming APEC summit.
Despite having 3 days to respond to the group, Luistro did not repeal the memo, so the group will push through with filing an administrative complaint against the secretary on the 11th, said Manano.
Members of the Mindanao Bishops’ conference, Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, and leaders of Protestant churches joined the November 11 activities. Early that day, Tagle issued a statement in support of the Lumad and members of the Mindanao Bishops’ Conference led the march on the MGB central office.
The Promotion of Church Peoples' Response (PCPR) also issued a statement calling for justice for the Lumad and peace in their communities. (READ: Stop Lumad killings, respect ancestral lands – Mindanao bishops)
The Friday march happens on the second day of the APEC Summit, which the Philippines is hosting for the second time in 19 years. - Rappler.com