Cops clash with urban poor activists outside Bantayog ng mga Bayani

COPS clashed with militant urban poor as they stage a protest outside the Bantayog ng mga Bayani compound an hour before Aquino is expected to speak to an audience in commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the imposition of Martial Law.

At least 11 were hurt from the side of the rallyists. Protesters belong to Kadamay-Anakpawis-North Triangle Chapter and Alyansa Kontra Demolisyon. They marched from an urban poor community along Agham Road in North Triangle, a community that has faced wave-after-wave of demolition threats since Aquino became President.

They were blocked by the police upon reaching to the vicinity of Bantayog compound.

Kadamay condemned the unabated cases of violent demolition in urban poor communities, as well as the killings of urban poor leaders due to housing-related issue. The group claimed 10 urban poor have been killed due to demolition- or housing-related issues, since Aquino assumed his post as president. While 16,000 urban poor families, according to the group, had lost their homes during the same period, in Metro Manila alone.

“Aquino’s demolition rampage is staggering and quite historical as no president in the country’s history has done the same brutal offensive against the urban poor sector,” Carlito Badion, Kadamay national vice chair, said.

His visit at today’s event in Bantayog ng Mga Bayani is an insult to the victims of Martial Law and to the Filipino people to who have fought against the Marcos dictatorship.

Kadamay also slammed Oplan Bayanihan which is Aquino’s unpopular anti-insurgency campaign, and according to Badion is behind the unprecedented killings of urban poor leaders.

Butcher of the urban poor

“If Marcos was a dictator, we dub Aquino as ‘butcher of the urban poor,'” Badion said, as he compared Aquino with the late dictator.

“Both are perpetrators of countless human right violations. While survey firms have made him popular, Aquino has been among the most unpopular presidents to rule the country, even worse than Marcos. Oplan Bayanihan has debunk his popular ‘daang matuwid’ political campaign,” he added.

“While thousands of urban poor Filipinos are bound to be homeless, or ditched to miserable relocation sites, and the gross violation of the rights of the urban poor remain unabated, Aquino’s fate would end up just like Marcos’. In the coming days, Aquino should not be surprised of another people power to evict him from his Palace,” he ended.

Badion also said that they are in unity with other sectors in today’s commemoration of Martial Law as other Kadamay members from different chapters in Metro Manila also joined the multi-sectoral march to Mendiola led by Bagong Alyansang Makabayan.

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