Groups Hit Militarys Red-Baiting, Warrant Vs. Luque

Apr. 24, 2006

DAVAO CITY The Bagong Alyansang Makabayan in Southern Mindanao said Monday it was strongly behind Alvin Luque, the groups former secretary-general here who is believed to be in hiding now, and vowed to continue fighting what it called as the Arroyo regimes political repression.

We decry the fact that under the current regime defending the limited democratic rights of the people and fighting for a just cause are being defined as crimes, says Ariel Casilao, the acting secretary-general of Bayan in Southern Mindanao.

Bayan said it saw the decision by a local court, which upheld the states arguments and ordered Luques arrest, as part of the calibrated and systematic attack against critics of the Arroyo regime.

This is a regime ready to bastardize the legal judicial processes to suit its self-serving ends, Casilao said.

Luque is a former secretary-general of Bayan Southern Mindanao and now works as secretary-general of Bayan Northern Mindanao. Bayan maintains that with the present political situation, where the exercise of the peoples democratic rights, freedom and liberties are systematically repressed, justice is elusive.

Casilao also denounced Task Force Davaos (TFD) Col. Eduardo Del Rosario for challenging Bayan to immediately surrender Luque to the authorities. Col. Del Rosario has no political or moral ascendancy for issuing that challenge considering his long list of criminal activities, foremost of which is masterminding the Alamara bandit and counter-insurgency operations in Paquibato, Casilao said.

Del Rosario had accused Luque of being a leader of the communist New Peoples Army. He had also accused leaders of progressive groups of being either Communists or are working as fronts for the NPA.

Last week, during a picket by groups led by Bayan Muna, the TFD displayed streamers calling Casilao and other leaders of legal organizations as communists.

“Col. Eduardo Del Rosario is anxious about the unceasing criticism against Task Force Davao, the military and the Arroyo government and apparently can only be comforted by putting up these ridiculous and slanderous materials,” said Jeppie Ramada, Bayan Munas regional spokesman.

Ramada, whose name was also on the streamers, said del Rosarios tagging them as communists is “perilous as it is tantamount to giving them the license to harass us, arrest us without warrants, file charges against us, or worse, have us abducted or killed.”

Dozens of leftist activists have been murdered under the Arroyo administration, many of them leaders and members of Bayan and Bayan Muna and their allied organizations.

Meanwhile, Karapatan, the human-rights group, condemned the court order against Luque, saying it was proof of the state’s rabid campaign to repress the rights and political freedoms of activists and progressive organizations.

Karapatan spokesman Kelly Delgado said the move “smacks of the bias of the judicial system in favor of the prevailing policy of the Arroyo government to criminalize its critics by using ridiculous and baseless charges.”

He said the Arroyo government appears “dogged to replicate the political persecution of partylist representatives known as the Batasan 6 by pursuing criminal cases against other leaders of the progressive organizations.”

Meanwhile, Bayan, along with the lawyers of Luque, said it plans to exhaust all legal remedies available to assert Luques innocence and prove the justness of his cause. On Monday, the legal counsel of Luque will be filing a motion for reconsideration to appeal the local courts decision. (

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