Illegally arrested, Illegally detained:
FREE KIM GARGAR NOW!

 

AGHAM Press Conference

 

 October 5, 2013

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"Kim Gargar graduated as Magna Cum Laude with a degree in BS Physics. After graduation, he taught at the University of the Philippines Diliman. He also pursued his passion for teaching aspiring physicists at the MAPUA Institute of Technology and the Polytechnic University of the Philippines.

As a bright boy from an underprivileged family in Iligan, Kim treasured scientific education and viewed it not just as a tool to further his personal gains but as a critical element in developing technologies for national development. He continued his studies as a doctorate student specializing in Chronobiology, a branch of science dealing with biological rhythms and cyclic processes in living organisms, at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands."

--- From press statement of AGHAM

   
 
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

5 October 2013

Kim Gargar: wrongfully accused, illegally detained
Family, scientists and environmentalists call for freedom of scientist caught in crossfire

QUEZON CITY, Philippines – the family and colleagues of Kim Gargar, a field scientist who was captured and accused by military troops as a member of the New People’s Army (NPA) in Davao Oriental province condemned his illegal arrest and detention last October 1 right after a clash between the rebels and state forces in the area.

“Kim Gargar was caught in a cross fire between the 67th Infantry Battalion of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the NPA while undertaking research in connection with rehabilitation efforts in Cateel Town, which was severely affected by Typhoon Pablo in 2012. We strongly condemn the illegal arrest and detention of Gargar who is clearly a victim of the AFP’s inability to discern civilians from armed combatants. The AFP should admit that this is a case of mistaken identity and immediately release Gargar to allow him to continue his development work,” said Feny Cosico, secretary general of the AGHAM-Advocates of Science & Technology for the People.

Gargar, a member physicist of AGHAM and a doctorate student on chronobiology in the University of Groningen in Netherlands, planned to work in Davao with communities for reforestation and rehabilitation work in Davao Oriental for six months. He was previously a member of a national fact-finding and relief mission held last April 18-20 this year aiming to document the extent of damages left by Typhoon Pablo and investigate the environmental destruction caused by corporate and large-scale mining and logging that made the province extremely vulnerable to the impacts of the typhoon. He has also been a participating expert in various environmental investigative missions such as on the mine waste spill by Philex in Benguet province and the impacts of monocrop plantations in Isabela province.

“The illegal detention of Gargar, along with fabricated charges of arms possession and murder filed against him, is preposterous. Does the AFP consider all field scientists working in conflict areas immediately as members of rebel groups? What do they gain by discouraging environmental advocates from actively participating in environmental management and protection through harassment? Gargar is the 11th environmental advocate to be slapped with harassment suits and the second illegally-detained environmental advocate this year, and we denounce this continuing impunity of state forces towards environmental advocates,” said Leon Dulce, spokesperson of Task Force-Justice for Environmental Defenders.

Gargar has long served as a people’s scientist through his volunteer work in AGHAM, which includes the promotion of the People’s Science School Program in urban poor communities and the Science for the People Colloquium, a venue for scientists to share their research outputs on appropriate technology for community development.

“As a bright youth in Iligan, Kim loved scientific education and viewed it not just as a tool for personal gain but as a critical element for national development. We join his friends and colleagues in calling for his immediate release and for the national government to respect his decision to bring his scientific work to the countryside where communities need help the most,” said Ivy Gargar, Gargar’s sister.

“The Aquino government should be supporting ‘barefoot’ scientists such as Gargar who chose to provide their technical expertise to communities most afflicted by the impacts of climate change and environmental destruction, which are also the communities least developed by the government. Plans are underway to launch a campaign from the local to the international level caling for the immediate release of Gargar,” ended Cosico.###

Reference: Feny Cosico – Secretary General, AGHAM – 0917 811 5445
 No. +63-2-9209099
 

     
     
           
     
     
     
           
     
 
Kim Gargar as MS, PhD student, physics teacher and AGHAM member
 
   Member of the UP Physics Theory Group, 2001  
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Kim Gargar as participant in the  OUST Erap campaign of AGHAM  in 2001
           

 

Press Statement
October 5, 2013

DO NOT VILIFY PEOPLE’S SCIENTISTS!
RELEASE KIM GARGAR NOW!

The AGHAM-Advocates of Science and Technology for the People strongly condemns the illegal arrest and detention of its member, physicist Kim Gargar, by the elements of the 67th Infantry Battalion of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. Gargar was caught in a crossfire between government soldiers and NPA rebels, while undertaking a research in connection with rehabilitation efforts on the impacts of Typhoon Pablo in Cateel, Davao Oriental. He was then arrested and charged with trumped up cases.

Gargar is a true blue scientist of the people. When he personally witnessed the plight of his fellow Mindanaoenos when he joined a humanitarian and fact finding mission last April 18-20, 2013, he was definite he had to return to Davao. He lamented the inaction and lack of support for the devastated communities, five months after Typhoon Pablo. He talked of the immense need to rehabilitate the forests and the environment to reduce the risks of disasters and help the people regain their source of water and life. In his return to Manila, Gargar immediately requested to be temporarily seconded to PanalipdanSouthern Mindanao to be allowed to directly contribute to restoration efforts.

The military’s claims are all incredible. Kim Gargar is not and has never been a member of the New People’s Army. He planned to work in Davao for six months with the communities in their efforts to rise up from the devastation of Typhoon Pablo. He planned to bring his family to his home province in Iligan this Christmas, before returning to work in Manila.

Kim Gargar graduated as Magna Cum Laude with a degree in BS Physics. After graduation, he taught at the University of the Philippines Diliman. He also pursued his passion for teaching aspiring physicists at the MAPUA Institute of Technology and the Polytechnic University of the Philippines. As a bright boy from an underpriviledged family in Iligan, Kim treasured scientific education and viewed it not just as a tool to further his personal gains but as a critical element in developing technologies for national development. He continued his studies as a doctorate student specializing in Chronobiology, a branch of science dealing with biological rhythms and cyclic processes in living organisms, at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands.

Carrying out AGHAM’s advocacy of making science and technology for the people, Kim decided to devote his time to volunteer work in AGHAM. As a scientist for the people, he unselfishly shared his technical expertise and energy in explaining scientific concepts to local communities to help sharpen their analysis in confronting issues that affect them.

His involvement with AGHAM includes the promotion of the People’s Science Schools in urban poor communities and the Science for the People Colloquium, a venue for scientists to share their research outputs on appropriate technology for community development. In the universities he worked, he institutionalized research groups inside science organizations with the aim of matching the subject of researches with the needs of marginalized communities.

As an environmental advocate, he was part of environmental investigative missions on various issues such as the impacts of cassava monocrop plantation in Isabela, the flooding study of the Buawaya River in Cordillera. Kim was an active member of a citizens’ watchdog group that monitored the issue of the huge mine spill caused by the failure of the tailings impoundment of Philex Mines in Benguet.

AGHAM calls for the immediate release of Kim Gargar and demands that all trumped-up charges be dropped so he could continue practicing his life-long commitment as a scientist for the people.

Source:
http://www.agham.org/cms/content/do-not-vilify-people%E2%80%99s-scientists-release-kim-gargar-now


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Make science and technology serve the people!
ADVOCATES OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY FOR THE PEOPLE (AGHAM)
127-B Scout Fuentebella St. corner Sacred Heart, Kamuning, Quezon City
T: +63 2 998 4226
URL: www.agham.org

 

Kim Gargar took this photo of a lecture on "Resonance and Synchronization"
at Lorentz Center in Leiden, Netherlands August 20-24, 2012 while a PhD student.
Lectures on Tubbataha Reef and other topics in January 2013 in Metro Manila. The
military claims he joined the NPA in 2012, at which time he was in the Netherlands.
           
     
     
     
Kim Gargar sings at a January 12, 2013 baptismal party attended by fellow environmental activists.
 
           
           
           

 

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