Sunday, July 3, 2011

National moratorium on demolitions needed to avoid repeat of Davao incident –labor group

02 July 2011

The unfortunate, violent face-off between the furious Inday (Mayor Sara Duterte) and the hapless Sheriff (Abe Andres) could have been avoided if there had been a declared national moratorium on demolitions, the labor group Partido ng Manggagawa (PM) said in a statement.

According to PM Secretary General Judy Ann Miranda, violent confrontations between the informal settlers and the demolition team are normal occurrence whenever an eviction or demolition order is enforced either by the court or by the government itself.  And in many instances, a hapless sheriff who has no personal discretion at all to either withhold or press on with the order coming from his/her bosses, ends up getting the ire of angry residents, or in this recent case in Davao – a brutal hit from the mayor’s furious fist.

“As a party of ordinary labourers, we cannot help but sympathize with Sheriff Abe Andres for the humiliating experience he suffered from the hands of Mayor Inday.  Yet we also recognize the firm resolve of Mayor Duterte in addressing the problem of her constituents in an appropriate manner and to prevent the expected outbreak of violence,” explained Miranda.   

In fact, added Miranda, “Minus the disposition for brutality, all LGU officials should have the kind of social instinct that Mayor Sara Duterte has.” 

The labor group together with other groups under the Kampanya para sa Makataong Pamumuhay (KAMP) had been urging the Palace since last year to declare a moratorium on demolitions, evictions and foreclosures on informal settlers while a new comprehensive housing policy is not yet in place.

“If the Masang Pinoy is really his boss, PNoy should likewise have the political will of Mayor Sara.  The President in fact neither needs a fist nor a gun to stop violent demolitions but just a pen for an Executive Order declaring a moratorium,” concludes Miranda.

PM recalled that just recently also, exchange of words occurred between Makati Mayor and Department of Interior and Local Government Secretary (DILG) Jessie Robredo when violent confrontations flared up during the demolition of the Laperal compound in Guadalupe.

Several other demolition operations also ended up in violence and resulted eventually to the massive displacement for the cities’ informal settlers.

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