Katribu marks Earth Day with protest and ritual


Davao City


April 22, 2010




Photos and captions by Karlos Manlupig



Press Release
April 21, 2010

Katribu marks Earth Day with protest and ritual



HUNDREDS of indigenous people’s belonging to the Katribu Partylist will mark today’s 40th Earth Day (April 22) with a protest activity and ritual condemning the anti-lumad and anti-environment 9-year track record of Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

Jomorito Goaynon, Katribu regional coordinator,disclosed that since Arroyo’s rise to power in 2001, mining, logging, plantations, mega-dams and other anti-environment projects sprouted like mushrooms in Northern Mindanao.

These includes the environmentally hazardous coal-fired power plant in Villanueva, Misamis Oriental, the mega-dam project in Pulangi V, the bio-ethanol plant project in Bayanga and Mambuaya in Cagayan de Oro (which was temporarily deferred due to the residents strong opposition), the expansion of the Dole and Del Monte’s pineapple and banana plantations, massive land conversions like the Hanjin Shipyard also in Misamis Oriental, and the unmitigated entry of large mining corporations in the forests of Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental and even Cagayan de Oro.

Arroyo’s policy in addressing the demands of the indigenous people’s to ancestral domain claim and right to self determination is instead terror and destruction, Goaynon said. Referring to the Mining Act of 1995, Goaynon said, this has been implemented continually despite the Supreme Court’s decision that it is unconstitutional.

“The Mining Act of 1995 has been a ticket of the government to continually plunder our flora and fauna at the expense of the lives of thousands of indigenous people’s in the region. Arroyo has only shown that she is indeed anti-Lumad and anti-environment contrary to her persistent claim to being pro-poor and pro-environment,” the Lumad leader said.

Bukidnon, dubbed as the food basket of Mindanao, now no longer yields corn, rice, and vegetables but is instead a main producer of pineapples and bananas for export.

Dole - Philippines, Del Monte, DAVCO and 6 other big foreign companies currently control 50 plantations that cover 70,128.28 hectares of the province. The set up of these plantations have destroyed forests to give way to high-value crops. The soil in plantations becomes eventually unproductive due to the heavy chemical treatment of the land.

It has also become a home to large mining companies which has encroached on 43,428.25 hectares of land mostly in upland, hinterland areas where majority of the lumads live.

“As we celebrate today’s Earth Day, we express our repugnance to this administration for it has only caused further environmental destruction, dislocation and alienation of our people to the genuine freedom from economic and societal discrimination,” the Higaonon tribal leader added. unsolved dastardly murders of Mampaagi Belayong, Aladino Badbaran and Rico Badbaran,

Consistent with her destructive policy is also her terror policy against those who oppose her and those who defend the environment. Goaynon said several lumad leaders and members of Katribu Partylist have been harassed, vilified and killed since 2001. These includes the unsolved dastardly murders of Mampaagi Belayong, Aladino Badbaran and Rico Badbaran,

Thousands of families all over the region are already displaced because of the massive militarization in upland areas, which Goaynon said, are actually disguised military-ops to pave the way for the entry of foreign mining and logging companies.

“The Bantay Laya 2 anti-insurgency drive of the Macapagal-Arroyo administration is merely a front to implement her design of making this region a basket-case of barren lands and destroyed fauna. As early as now, we express our grief should Asin’s ditty on the environment called “Kapaligaran” will reach its full crescendo,” Goaynon said. ###

For Reference:


Old, wise and an environmentalist. Datu Monico of the Bagobo tribe offers a prayer as Katribu Party-list joins thousands across the globe in celebrating Earth Day. Lumads from Southern Mindanao is urging the public to participate in defending our environment from developmental aggression.


Save Mother Earth, Save lives. Lumads from Southern Mindanao join thousands across the globe in celebrating Earth Day. Katribu Party-list is calling for the people to unite and defend our environment from further destruction.



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26 Matulungin St. Central Dist., Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines, 1100
Tel./Fax; +63 (2) 924-8756; E-mail: kalikasan.pne@gmail.com
Website: www.kalikasan.org

Press Release

22 April 2010

Environmental activists’ Earth Day message: Don't recycle anti-environment candidates

Environmentalists declared two reasons to celebrate Earth Day this April 22. One is President Arroyo, the most environmentally disastrous president, will step down from office two months from now. The other is that in less than a month, the nation will have a chance to elect progressive and environmental leaders that hopefully will mend the destruction that took place during the nine years Arroyo was in office.

"In the past Earth Day celebrations, we have expressed disgust and condemnation on the mismanagement and sell-out of our natural resources that have caused massive ecological disasters. So while we still seek justice for the damages of Arroyo’s policies, we are relieved that we will finally get rid of the most ineffective and environmentally disastrous President we have had," said Clemente Bautista Jr. of Kalikasan People’s Network for the Environment.

According to Kalikasan PNE, Arroyo’s economic policies that promote large-scale mining, export-oriented agriculture, commercial logging, extensive oil and gas extraction, and privatization of public utilities like water and energy have caused enormous environmental degradation and displacement of communities.

“We must not forget that environmental tragedies like Guimaras Oil spill, Southern Leyte Landslide, Aurora-Quezon flashflood, and San Roque dam flashflood happened under this administration because it allowed the massive extraction of our natural resources and failed to make necessary actions to address the impacts of environmental degradation and global warming,” said Ms. Meggie Nolasco of Philippine Climate Watch Alliance (PCWA).

PCWA advised voters to choose leaders who will not follow the footsteps Arroyo's administration. They should address not only the need to adapt to climate change but also the need for mitigation. The latter could be attained by the reversal of destructive economic and environmental policies such as the Mining Act of 1995 and the Philippine Forestry Code.

“This coming elections, we should divest with the old, dirty and environmentally unfriendly leaders and put into government new leaders with good environmental track records and clear pro-people and pro-environment platforms,” said Ms. Frances Quimpo, Executive Director of Center for Environmental Concerns-Philippines and convenor of EnviVote Alliance.

“Administration candidates will surely repeat the old policies, programs and projects of the government which are proven detrimental to ecosystems and communities thus these candidates must not be recycled,” said Ms. Quimpo

“We should also be wary of so-called opposition leaders who promise to protect the environment but in the past have facilitated the approval of laws and agreements like Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement (JPEPA), Mutual Logistic Support Agreement (MLSA), Electric Power Industry Reform Act (EPIRA) and Biofuels Law which gravely affected our communities,” explained Ms. Quimpo.

Kalikasan People’s Network, Philippine Climate Watch Alliance, Agham, Agham-Youth and Center for Environmental Concerns are those that led the Earth Day Rally with the theme “Vote for the Environment, Vote for the People”. Representatives of progressive party list groups such as Katribu, Bayan Muna, Gabriela, Anakpawis, Kabataan Partylist, and ACT Teachers’ Party list.

The groups marched and held a protest mobilization in front of Department of Natural and Environment Resources (DENR) which culminated in the signing of ‘Covenant for the Environment’ to underscore their topmost environmental concerns and demands that should be addressed in the coming elections.

“Ultimately, we the candidates that we must support are those that are truly for the environment: they have a clear environmental agenda that rejects anti-people and destructive policies like those pursued by the Arroyo government,” Ms. Quimpo ended.



Reference: Clemente Bautista, national coordinator Kalikasan PNE, 09228449787 or 9209099.

KALIKASAN People's Network for the Environment is a network of people's organizations (POs), non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and environmental advocates. It believes that the struggle for the environment is a struggle of the people, thus all environmental action shall have the interest of the majority at their core.




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26 Matulungin St. Central Dist., Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines, 1100
Tel./Fax; +63 (2) 924-8756; E-mail: kalikasan.pne@gmail.com
Website: www.kalikasan.org

Press Statement
20 April 2010

Environmental watchdogs give pointers on how to identify green candidates

As we celebrate Earth Day 2010, let us remember that our state of environment is so intricately bound with the political and economic aspects of our society. This proposition is crucial as we unravel the reason why in spite of our country's rich natural resources, we have remained underdeveloped, people sinking deeper in poverty and has become more vulnerable to the backlash of a destroyed environment.

Much of our environmental problems stem largely from neoliberal economic policies of the government. These national polices and practices that undermine our national patrimony and genuine development can be reversed if we institute officials this 2010 National Elections who genuinely has the interest of the people and environment to heart.

To aid the voters in being critical and in choosing true environment-friendly, progressive and patriotic leaders Envi Vote 2010 Alliance, an environmental coalition pushing for ecological reforms in the coming elections, have set up pointers and suggestions to gauge if the electoral candidates are up to the task of protecting and rehabilitating our environment after they have sworn into office.

With every national candidate claiming to be an environmental advocate, we voters must be involved, critical and attentive to the news or current debates and do our own research. We will know if the candidates are really champions of the environment if they have the following stand on crucial issues below and if their record in the past ten years is consistent with what they profess:

The candidate must posses the following qualities and has stood by following convictions:

1. In pursuit of Environmental Justice

The candidate has sided with green groups and grassroots organizations in their quest for environmental justice and compensation for the victims of US toxic waste, Guimaras Oil Spill, MV Princess sinking, political killings and militarization, Marcopper mining tragedy, Aurora Quezon flashflood, Southern Leyte landslide, or San Roque Dam flooding.

2. In defense of our national patrimony and judicious use of natural resources

The candidate has worked or voted against anti-environment policies like Japan-Philippine Economic Partnership Agreement (JPEPA), Electric Power Industry Reform Act 2001 (EPIRA), Mining Act of 1995 and Biofuel Act 2007 which allows private and foreign corporations to exploit, control and plunder our marine, agricultural and energy resources

3. For the genuine protection and rehabilitation of the environment

The candidate has a proven track record in protecting the biodiversity in the communities by promoting and supporting ecosystem rehabilitation and protection through reforestation programs, declaration of environmentally critical protected areas, and moratorium on commercial logging and large-scale mining.

4. Struggled against environmental degradation and resource depletion

The candidate believes that our national patrimony should first and foremost be reserved and finally used for the Filipino people, for our own needs and benefit and for the country’s progress and is thus opposed to the national and policies and programs of the Arroyo government which facilitated implementation of environmentally dangerous projects in the provinces like large-scale mining, commercial logging coal power plants and landfills which are detrimental to the health of the communities and to the environment.

5. Advocated against dirty technologies and environmentally destructive projects

The candidate have stated their opposition or passed resolution to investigate or stop controversial environmentally destructive projects such as the revival of Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP), construction of coal power plants, Rapurapu Mining, JAPEX oil exploration, or Hanjin Hotel Project in Zambales Forest.

6. Advocated against militarization and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction

The candidate has worked or voted against the ratification of US-RP Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) and Mutually Logistic Agreement (MLSA), which facilitates the entry of nuclear arms and weapons of mass destruction, and the conduct of war exercises in the country.

If a national candidate has positively responded or passed at least three concerns above, he or she is most likely a genuine ecological advocate and will pass environmental reforms if ever wins.

Another important consideration is the candidate’s electoral agenda for the environment. They should outline their the agenda on the principles that protect the right of Filipinos to balanced and healthful ecology, judicious use of our natural resources, and defend our national patrimony.

They must pledge or assure that they will work for the review, amendment or reversal of economic policies which are most detrimental to our environment and causes depletion of our natural resources such as the Mining Act of 1995, Fisheries Code of 1998, and Forestry Code of 1975. This is in conjunction with the strengthening and strict implementation of environmental laws and rules in the country such as the Writ of Kalikasan, Solid Waste Management Act, Toxic Substances, Hazardous and Nuclear Wastes Control Act, and Animal Welfare Act of 1998.

Last but not the least, the candidate should promise not replicate the dismal and poor record of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo in protecting our environment and conserving our natural resources through her grand sell-out of our communities and patrimony.



Let there be light. Lumads in Davao lit torches as they join thousands across the globe in celebrating Earth Day. Katribu Party-list slams the Arroyo administration for its outright sell-out of the environment and natural resources to foreign corporations.


Reference: Clemente Bautista, national coordinator Kalikasan PNE, 09228449787 or 9209099.

KALIKASAN People's Network for the Environment is a network of people's organizations (POs), non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and environmental advocates. It believes that the struggle for the environment is a struggle of the people, thus all environmental action shall have the interest of the majority at their core.

National Coordinator
Kalikasan People's Network for the Environment (Kalikasan-PNE)
No.26 Matulungin St. Bgy. Central, Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines 1100
Tel. No. +63-2-9248756 Fax No. +63-2-9209099
Email: kalikasan.pne@gmail.com
Website: www.kalikasan.org




People's Court of FSMR Finds XSTRATA-SMI Guilty of Plunder and of
Destroying the Mountains and Rivers of South Central Mindanao

Ka Efren
<http://www.philippi nerevolution. net/cgi-bin/ statements/ stmts.pl? author=ndffsm>

NDF-Far South Mindanao
/April 22, 2010/

In an en banc resolution of the People's Court -- FSMR, the multinational mining company Xstrata-SMI has been found guilty for the continuing plunder of our natural resources and is causing irreversible
damage to the watersheds and the major river systems in south central Mindanao. While still in their so-called "exploration stage," the company has already caused damage on the fragile ecosystem of the
quadriboundary, destroyed mountains and are forcing tribal residents to leave their ancestral lands and find livelihood elsewhere. Xstrata's large scale open pit mining will bring billions of dollars for the multinational company, but will leave the Filipino people nothing but dust, industrial waste and environmental ruin which would affect not just us but the next generations.

Xstrata-SMI' s large scale mining is proving to be very detrimental to the watersheds and major river systems of the provinces of South Cotabato, Davao del Sur, Sultan Kudarat and Sarangani. In Davao del Sur, the company is building its tailings pond right within the watersheds near Mal River which would contaminate and destroy two national and nineteen communal irrigation systems and the livelihood of at least 9,000 farmers. The same will happen to Koronadal Valley because the Koronadal watershed will also be affected by the open pit mines. At stake is the food security of Mindanao's rice granaries. No less than
the Davao City and Davao del Sur Federation of Irrigators Association has passed a resolution strongly opposing the mining operations of Xstrata-SMI. The Catholic Church has also expressed repeatedly its
opposition to the company's operations. Even more stringent is the clamor of residents who want the company out. But Xstrata-SMI has remained deaf to the people's voice.

Not content with mining, Xstrata-SMI has also planned a coal fired power plant in Malalag town, Davao del Sur which would produce the electricity needed for the company's operations. A coal fired power plant which is another dirty industry, will be very harmful to the people living around Malalag Bay. It will also contaminate the Bay which is the source of livelihood of at least 30,000 fisherfolks.

To date, Xstrata-SMI has been busy convincing government agencies and other stakeholders to sign the Memorandum of Agreement for the Environmental Compliance Certificate which would give them the go signal for unrestrained plunder. They have used cash, 'environmental' tours, scholarship grants and propaganda gimmicks to get what they want -- the immediate signing of the agreement before their partner in crime, Gloria Arroyo, bows out of Malacañang.

Xstrata-SMI wants all opposition silenced, hence it has funded and sponsored a military campaign of terror on those living within and in the peripheries of the mining area. Under the name of Oplan Bantay Laya, this military campaign which has been implemented mainly by the 27th IB and Task Force KITACO under the 10th Infantry Division -- AFP has terrorized civilians, especially leaders of the open democratic mass movement, threatened and harassed them into silence. Many have been forced to evacuate.

Circumstantial evidence has pointed to the company Xstrata-SMI as one of the masterminds behind the death of anti-mining activist Boy Billanes who was killed in cold blood on March 9, 2009 in the Koronadal
marketplace, a few distance from the police station. Up to this time, the gunmen remain at large.

In view of these findings and based on the basic principles of revolutionary justice, the People's Court of FarSouth Mindanao Region, on the occasion of Earth Day, has ordered the New People's Army, the
Milisyang Bayan and the Barrio Self Defense Units of the People's Revolutionary Government to arrest corporate executive officers of Xstrata-SMI and/or their top level official representatives and to bring them to the People's Court for the proper legal and judicial proceedings.


 Defend the environment. Datu Monico of the Bagobo tribe leads the Lumads from Davao City in celebrating Earth Day. Katribu Party-list organized the torch march calling for the people to defend the environment from developmental aggression.