We condemn the recent assault on the protesting Lumads at Montalvan Ranch on March 24, 2014. The Lumads of Quezon Bukidnon were on the receiving end of yet again another shooting spree by more than 20 trigger-happy armed guards of Pablo Lorenzo killing one of the protesting Lumads – Mabini Baeto, and wounding two others – Jave Sam Bagna and Romeo Timtim
The victims were members of Tribal Indigenous Oppressed Group Association (TINDOGA), one of the eight claimants of the Ancestral Domain at Botong, Quezon, Bukidnon under CADT (Certificate of Ancestral Domain Title) number R10-QUE-0712-159. TINDOGA, together with 200 individuals from three other claimant groups (Lacubay Clan, Villalon Clan and Ampoan Clan) were conducting a “Bungkalan”, a type of protest to reassert their claims in the disputed land since March 16, 2015.
This is the latest in an almost-annual incident of direct assault against the lumads of Montalvan Ranch.
TINDOGA and the three other groups were harassed for their refusal to sign a Memorandum of Agreement which forces them to leaseback their lands to agri-firm Davao-Ventures Corporation (DAVCO) when awarded. DAVCO is a joint venture of Del Monte Philippines Corporation and ANFLOCOR.
This recent blood bath is a clear indicator of Lorenzo’s pathetic attempts to control the land as he is without any tenurial instrument given by any government agency. What he is displaying is his pure landlord mentality and Mafia-like machinations. He thinks he can stay in the land as long as he wants as long as he shoots the every protesting Lumad who thinks otherwise.
We reiterate our firm stance that Lorenzo should not be allowed to stay in the area, more so maintain the presence of armed security personnel because the lease agreement of Rancho Montalvan, Inc., with AFFLA #123, had already expired on December 31, 2009.
With all of his braggadocio, Lorenzo has awakened a rising militant determination in the Lumad claimants of Montalvan ranch.
We believe that the local agencies are as accountable for this blood bath as Lorenzo is. By turning a blind eye to the events at Montalvan Ranch, they have become willing accomplices in Lorenzo’s brutality. Their inactions and mal-actions have only emboldened Lorenzo to continue his brutal ways, especially the NCIP (National Commission on Indigenous Peoples) whose failure to grant the Lumad’s CADT have only prolonged their agony.
We commend the Lumads for their determination to reclaim their lands—being descendants of Datu Mandaghaan Anglao and Datu Manragnas Agdahan—whom were deceived by Don Manolo Fortich into giving up their lands to raise cattle. We urge them to continuously unite and persevere in their struggle to claim their ancestral domain. Doing so is to give justice to the deception and discrimination done against them and their ancestors.###
Jomorito G. Goaynon
Kalumbay Regional Lumad Organization
Mobile: 0936 334 7754