Migrante International today called on overseas Filipinos around the world to help raise the bail money needed for the release of 22 Hacienda Luisita farm workers who are under threat of being arrested for asserting their right to till the Luisita lands.
Judge Marvin Mangino of Branch 1 of the Municipal Trial Court in Tarlac ordered the arrest of Lito Bais, chairman of Unyon ng Manggagawa sa Agrikutura (UMA) and 21 others on charges filed by the Rizal Commercial and Banking Corporation (RCBC) in July – days after the farm workers tilled portions of Luisita lands being claimed by the bank.
The court recommended bail of P12,000 each or a total of P264, 000 for the temporary release of the farm workers.
“We call on OFWs to show support for Hacienda Luisita farm workers by helping them raise the bail needed should their arrests push through. The amount is clearly too much for farm workers who have been stripped of their livelihood,” said Garry Martinez, Migrante International chairperson.
“We also vehemently condemn the issuance of arrest warrants. The Luisita farm workers had every right to the lands that they cultivated. They were only asserting what is rightfully theirs,” he said.
Donations for support for the Luisita farm workers may be deposited to Suhay Kanayunan BPI Account Number 3083611375.###