Morong 43 And Ampauan Massacre Cases
Highlighted in Children's Press Conference
Submitted by salinlahi on Sat, 03/06/2010 - 05:19.
Morong 43 And Ampatuan Massacre Cases Highlighted
CHILDREN CALL FOR JUSTICE FOR WOMEN VICTIMS
OF HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS UNDER THE ARROYO REGIME ON INTERNATIONAL
WOMEN’S DAY CENTENARY
Quezon City, Philippines - A month after the illegal arrest and subsequent
detention of 43 health workers in Morong, Rizal, children and relatives of
the 43 detained health workers appealed to authorities, especially the
Court of Appeals, to rule in favor of the 43 detained health workers.
In a press conference today, Ms. Sophia Garduce, spokesperson of SALINLAHI
Alliance for Children’s Concerns aired the appeal of the detainee’s
children. “As we are about to celebrate the International Women’s Day on
March 8, children of the Morong 43 want their mother, sisters and other
relatives to celebrate the day together with them, outside camp Capinpin
and away from any harm, threat and abuse.”
Egoy, the 4 year old son of Dr. Merry Clamor, said that "ang nanay kong
doktora laging nasa PGH kasi marami siyang pasyente dun... pero noon yun.
Ngayon, kawawa naman ang mga pasyente ni Nanay kasi kinulong na siya. Wala
naman siyang kasalanan. Paano na ang mga pasyente niya?” (My Mom is a
doctor who is always in PGH because she had many patients there. But that
was before. Now, her patients will suffer because she was detained. She
did not commit any crime. How will her patients cope now?) He added that
he misses his mother and demanded,“Palayain si Nanay!’ (Free my mother!)
The press conference was attended by sons, daughters and other relatives
of 43 health workers and classmates of Egoy who gave support by shouting
“Palayain si Nanay Merry!”
Garduce reiterated that the 43 health workers should be freed immediately.
“We attest to the sincerity of doctors and community health workers who
provide medical services to thousands of poor community folks, even in the
remotest areas where government services are a total failure, and without
any desire to amass wealth out of their services.” She added that Dr.
Clamor also served as the vice president of a day care center run by the
Parents Alternative on Early Childhood Care and Development or PAECCD, a
member organization of SALINLAHI. “Nanay Merry is not only a mother to
Egoy, she is also a mother to all students in the day care center as she
conducts regular check ups for the children and provides medical service
anytime she is needed. As the 43 health workers continue to languish under
the hands of their illegal custodians and torturers, thousands of children
in rural and urban poor areas are being deprived of their health
services,” added Garduce.
Garduce also warned the military not to touch or approach any child or
relative of the detainees. “We are alarmed over reports that the military
are resorting to psychological pressure by using the detainee’s family and
relatives, such as threatening harm or luring them with cash or material
incentives, to implicate themselves or their co-detainees as members of
the New People’s Army. We demand the military to stop this dirty tactics.”
Garduce stressed that “the impunity of the present government, ironically
headed by a woman president, creates a society of orphans, traumatized
children and broken families through extra-judicial killings, enforced
disappearance, displacement, massacres and illegal arrest and detention.
“SALINLAHI believes that Arroyo’s coddling of this culture of impunity and
continued tyrannical rule is only made possible because our society is in
a de facto martial rule,” She said. “For the sake of our children, this
should end. As we celebrate the International Women’s day on Monday, we
will march and stand together with the families in calling to FREE OUR
SISTER! FREE OUR MOTHERS! FREE THE 43! and for JUSTICE NOW FOR THE 58
AMPATUAN MASSACRE VICTIMS! ###
Ms Sophia Garduce, Spokesperson, 0928-508-9104
by Vuong Quoc Vuo
is a flower
—William Carlos Williams, “Asphodel, That Greeny Flower”
My brother, come home from war,
sits now for hours in the garden.
I see now, he says, everything
as flowers, the tendency of all things
to bloom—even the way the body bleeds,
the fire from guns, the sun unfurling
after the longest night. Everything blooms.
Brother, he says, I saw so many dead
I’ve realized the body is, after all,
above all, a fragile flowery thing.
Despite the marble column of its spine,
the great architecture of how it stands,
the arches and taut ropes of muscle,
it is easily torn apart, gunned through,
drowned, and plowed under,
how it withers with time and hunger.
When I saw the dead, I didn’t look
at faces and never, never into the eyes.
I avoided all implications of a soul, a name.
I looked at hands—those miracles of sinew
and veins—and imagined them to be leaves.
I have seen severed hands
as if they’d fallen from a tree,
hands crushed and burned crisp.
I have seen wounds on them
like purple trillium forced through the skin.
I have seen blood that spilled and splattered
like asters, the plum colors of viscera.
Brother, I have come home from Hell.
How now shall I tell the story
of Man—the wars, wars, wars
until the end of time?
How now shall I tell, my mind
already a shattering lake of glass,
my heart bullet- holed—
to write in blood or red rose petals?
Bulaklak na Sumasabog
Salin ni Alessandro Enrico Aguilar
is a flower
—William Carlos Williams
“Asphodel, That Greeny Flower”
Ang aking kapatid, kauuwi lamang mula sa gera,
ngayo’y inaabot na ng ilang oras sa pagmumuni sa may halamanan.
Nakikita ko na ngayon, aniya, ang lahat
bilang bulaklak, ang tendensiya ng lahat ng bagay
na mamukadkad—kahit ang paraan ng katawang dumugo,
ang putok mula sa mga armas, ang araw sa pagbubukang-liwayway
matapos ang napakahabang gabi. Ang lahat ay namumukadkad.
Kapatid ko, sasabihin niya, nakita ko ang napakaraming patay,
napagtanto kong ang katawan, matapos ang lahat,
higit sa lahat, ay isang babasaging bulaklak.
Kahit na marmol na haligi ang kanyang gulugod,
magilas ang arkitektura niya sa pagkakatayo,
ang mga arko at matitibay na lubid ng kanyang kalamnan,
madali pa rin siyang mapunit, malagusan ng bala,
malunod at maararo pailalim,
kung paano siya mangalirang sanhi ng panahon at gutom.
Kapag nakakakita ako ng patay, hindi ako tumitingin
sa mga mukha, lalong-lalo na sa mga mata.
Iniwasan ko lahat ng implikasyon ng isang kaluluwa, ng isang ngalan.
Tumitingin ako sa mga kamay—iyong mga himala ng litid
at mga ugat—at iniisip kong sila’y mga dahon.
Nakita ko na ang mga putol na kamay
na wari bang sila’y napigtal mula sa isang puno,
mga kamay na durog at malutong sa pagkakapaso.
Nakita ko sa kanila ang mga sugat
tulad ng lilang trilyo na waring pilit ipinasok sa balat.
Nakita ko ang dugong nasayang, nagsaboy
tulad ng mga aster, ang kulay duhat ng mga lamang-loob.
Kapatid ko, galing na ako ng Impiyerno.
Paano ko ngayon isasalaysay ang kuwento
ng Sangkatauhan—ang mga gera, digma, mga digmaan
hanggang sa katapusan ng panahon?
Paano ako ngayon magsasalaysay, ang isip ko’y
isa nang basag na lawa ng salamin,
puso ko’y tadtad na ng butas ng bala—
ang sumulat gamit ang dugo o mga talulot ng pulang rosas?
Note: English and Pilipino versions of this poem courtesy of Jess
SALINLAHI CONDEMNS TORTURE INFLICTED BY THE
MILITARY TO THE 43 HEALTH WORKERS, CALLS FOR THEIR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Submitted by salinlahi on Wed, 02/10/2010 - 05:37.
Quezon City, Philippines - A group of child rights advocates led by
SALINLAHI Alliance for Children’s Concerns joined the protest in front of
the Department of Defense (DND) to condemn the abduction and torture of 43
health workers by the AFP’s 202nd Infantry Brigade and the Philippine
National Police (PNP) in Morong, Rizal. “We condemn the illegal arrest of
the health workers who are just having seminar for the betterment of poor
communities especially in the far flung areas,” Sophia Garduce, the
group’s spokesperson said.
Garduce also scored the military for inflicting mental and physical
torture to the health workers. “The torture inflicted on them goes against
all humanitarian law and the AFP once again has shown its wanton disregard
for human rights by adding this to its long record of torturing detainees
to extract information against their will,” Garduce said. She also added
that “The health workers are innocent of all the charges labeled against
them, and yet the military treats them much much worse than the kid
gloves’ treatment of the detained Ampatuans.”
Garduce noted that one those detained, Dr. Merry Mia-Clamor is a PTA Vice
President of the Parents Alternative for Early Childhood Care and
Development, Inc. (PAECCDI), a SALINLAHI member organization. “She
regularly sends and fetches their child from the day care center run by
PAECCDI, and conducts medical check-ups for the children in the center. We
can attest to her work as a health professional and assert that the
charges against her and all the other health trainees are all false and
are intended to sow terror among health professionals who are willing to
serve sincerely the poor who are neglected by the government,” stated
The group also raised their concern that among the 26 female detainees,
two are pregnant. “The pregnant women need maternal health care, but with
their present condition, we fear for their health and the safety of the
unborn fetus,” Garduce said.
Salinlahi and its member organizations believe that the abduction and
subsequent illegal detention of the 43 health workers is a desperate move
of the AFP and PNP to meet the deadline set by Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, to
crush the insurgency by June 2010 as dictated by their Oplan Bantay Laya.
“This is a clear case of witch-hunting through trumped-up charges against
perceived enemies who turn out to be innocent and sincere servants of the
people. The state forces who took part in the operation to arrest the
health workers are in such deep paranoia that they no longer distinguish
civilians from combatants; and as such, all sectors are already their
targets,” ended Garduce. ###