URGENT ALERT | 11:33 PM
March 20, 2019: Elements of the military are currently at the office of Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN) – Northern Mindanao in Camaman-an, Cagayan de Oro City.
According to initial reports, around 20 soldiers arrived in a military truck and a van. The soldiers asked the BAYAN staff on the whereabouts of a certain “Albert”. The BAYAN members responded that they do not know about the person the military is looking for.
As of this writing, the soldiers are still outside the BAYAN office, claiming they are waiting for the police to arrive tomorrow with a search warrant. The soldiers told the staff members that they are under house arrest and are not allowed to leave the office.
The BAYAN staff are worried that the soldiers and police will force their way inside the office and plant evidence against BAYAN and its members. This was the scenario when the military and police raided the office of the Misamis Oriental Farmers Association (MOFA) on January 30 this year. Four MOFA members are currently detained and waiting trial for trumped up charges based on planted evidence from that raid.
This incident can be counted as yet another attempt to threaten human rights defenders in the Region. It is also an attempt to demonize BAYAN and its allied organizations who are supporting the Makabayan Bloc of progressive partylists this coming elections.
Rev. Fr. Rolando Abejo
Source: Movement Against Tyranny – Northern Mindanao Region
Date: March 20, 2019