MANILA — As the Supreme Court (SC) continued its oral arguments on August 24, Hacienda Luisita farmers workers and their supporters held a protest action and reiterated their call to revoke the Stock Distribution Option scheme being implemented by the Cojuangco-Aquinos
The farmers also denounced the alleged ‘compromise deal’ and the distribution of ‘financial assistance’ to the farmers amounting to P1.35, P2.70 or lower.
The Alyansa ng Manggagawang Bukid sa Asyenda Luisita (AMBALA), showed a copy of a receipt given to Andy Andaya, a farmworker from Bgy. Asturias. Andaya had 4 shares for the year 1989 to 2004, and additional “accelerated shares” of 4, totalling 8 shares but received an insulting P1.35 gross amount of ‘financial assistance.’ Another farmworker who had a total of 16 shares received an amount of P2.70.
“This is the concrete manifestation that the Cojuangco-Aquinos’ scammed the farmers in Hacienda Luisita. Obviously they have not explained thoroughly what the new referendum would give them. Farmworkers said that they have promised with amounts P20,000 to P150,000 but all they got are insulting P1.35 to P2.70,” Danilo Ramos, Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) national secretary-general, said.
The farmers also criticized President Benigno Aquino III for distancing himself from the issue.
“It is very disturbing that a president who claimed he is for change and for the interest of the people, keeps his ‘hands-off’ to an obviously unjustifiable and inhuman measures being done by his family and relatives. The Cojuangco-Aquinos are obviously scamming the farmers but Aquino safely distance himself and abdicates his duties to protect the interest of the people,” Ramos said. (Photos by Angelica de Lara / Bulatlat.com)