Jeffrey Bajo Delos Reyes is currently at the provincial hospital in Calapan City and is in critical condition after being shot in the head. He is 37 years old and has been in jail since September 2016.
The recent operations in Rodriguez are the latest in a series of intensified crackdown operations under the Duterte administration. In Rodriguez, Kasiglahan Village has been the target of intensified police and military surveillance following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Over the years, developers have targeted the highway between Santa Rosa and Tagaytay as a prime development spot. Ayala Land, Inc. and the Lucio Tan-owned Greenfield Development Corporation first began development in Santa Rosa in the early 2000s, much to the dismay of farmers and residents who lived in the area.
According to initial reports received by the group, elements of the Philippine National Police Regional Mobile Force Battalion – Region 4A, PNP San Pablo, and the military arrived at Marcellana and Relao’s house approximately 1 a.m. and arrested the two individuals. No warrants were issued for the two, but they were charged with kidnapping, murder, rebellion and illegal possession of firearms.
The last time I saw you was in a meeting for Hacienda Yulo. You were gaunt and tired from dialysis, and you arrived late in the afternoon when most of us had started in the morning. You could barely keep awake, and yet every time we suggested that you rest, you insisted that you stay in the meeting. “We have to finish this meeting,” you would always assert.
The recent string of harassment and attacks are meant to “silence workers in the lead up to Labor Day.”
“There is a clear and systemic pattern of vilifying human rights defenders as ‘terrorists’ or ‘subversives’ that has started even before the Duterte regime.”
“Our struggle isn’t distinct from the struggles of the nation” was a line he would often say during mobilizations, “which is why the working class must always rise up in solidarity with the rest of the nation.”
“Unionists are not terrorists. Terrorists do not fight for wages, decent conditions, and workers’ rights. Terrorists are those who intimidate, arrest, and kill people who stand up for justice and the common good.”
PAMANTIK-KMU has stated before that the Duterte administration is specifically targeting labor activists and unionists. These attacks, the group claims, intensified since the start of lockdown due to COVID-19 on March 17, 2020.
“How can [the judiciary] distance themselves [from the police action] if they themselves signed the documents used to make the operations seem legitimate?” – Defend Southern Tagalog