By MARYA SALAMAT
MANILA – Christine Cabardo, chairperson of League of Filipino Students (LFS) in Northern Mindanao, and her family were arrested July 11 in what her colleagues described as a “fake buy-bust operation” by the police.
In a message sent to Bulatlat today by Vennel Chenfoo, another student leader among the GenSan13 and a leader of Kabataan Partylist in Northern Mindanao, he said that around 5 p.m. yesterday, July 11, Cabardo and her family were accosted in a beach resort in Linamon, Lanao del Norte.
“Without charges to file, they accosted Cabardo’s mother to claim planted drugs in their motorcycle,” Chenfoo said. He said the reports they gathered described the arresting officials as personnel in plain clothes or not in uniform.
As of this writing, Cabardo’s mother is still in police custody at Linamon Police Station. There is still no report yet if she has been charged.
Speaking in behalf of Kabataan Partylist, Chenfoo condemned “the state’s desperation to silence activists such as Kristine, who champions the rights of basic sectors.” In this case, he said the state has gone as far as charging the families of their critics for crimes they did not commit.
The GenSan13 comprises the 13 volunteer staff and leaders of partner organizations of Iglesia Filipina Independiente – Visayas-Mindanao Regional Office for Development (IFI-VIMROD) who were taken in by the police last July 4. On that date, around 60 members of a composite team of the police, military, and CIDG stormed the program consultation and assessment of the IFI-VIMROD.