ANTIPOLO City, Feb. 16, 2012—The Alyansa ng mga Magbubukid sa Asyenda Luisita (Ambala) and the Unyon ng mga Manggagawa sa Agrikultura (UMA) fear that the money that is supposedly allotted for the compensation of farmworker-beneficiaries (FWBs) will be “used” by Malacañang to “influence” the outcome of the ongoing impeachment trial against Chief Justice Renato C. Corona.
In a joint statement sent to CBCPNews.com, UMA, Ambala and the partylist Anakpawis said that since the newly appointed Solicitor General is actually a Cojuangco “molded” official, it is possible that Sol-Gen Francis Jerdeleza would serve as its “spin doctor” and will try to influence the Impeachment Court to ensure that the chief justice would be removed from office and the November 2011 decision on the Hacienda Luisita case would eventually reversed, if the new Chief Justice, now appointed by President Benigno C. Aquino III, will takeover.
There were rumors that there is already P100 million “grease money” readied, as to ensure the “positive” outcome of the case against Corona. However, as of this writing, the information is to be confirmed yet.
Nevertheless, the farmworkers urged the Supreme Court to expedite the finalization of the Hacienda Luisita case in order to resolve the brewing tension among the farmworkers in the Hacienda.
“Giving the decision final and executory to distribute Hacienda Luisita is correcting the historical, legal and moral injustice that the farm workers experienced at the hands of the Cojuangco-Aquino’s. The time is ripe for the high court to give what is due to the farm workers, their long and arduous struggle should finally be compensated by assuring that the vast sugar state would be given to them without any conditions,” a part of the joint statement read.
UMA, meanwhile, calls for the support of the public, the church, progressive groups and other concerned citizens to be vigilant on any possible plots of the President and his relatives to reverse the court’s decision that favors the FWBs.
On Feb. 17, at 12 noon, a Mass will be celebrated at the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene for the cause of the Hacienda Luisita farmers. The said Mass is led by the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines-National Secretariat for Social Action, Justice and Peace (CBCP-NASSA), together with the Luisita People’s Alliance (LUPPA). The Mass is themed “Isang Pagkain, Isang Bayan: Lupa at Hustisya sa Asyenda Luisita.” [Noel Sales Barcelona/CBCPNews]