Bayan Muna partylist representatives Neri Colme-nares and Carlos Isagani Zarate condemned the latest attack on lumad schools in Kitaotao town in Bukid-non.
The Fr. Fausto Tentorio Memorial School in Baran-gay White Culaman in Kit-aotao town, Bukidnon run by the Mindanao Interfaith Services Foundation Inc. was reportedly destroyed by a mob led by barangay captain Felipe Cabugnason and aided by some members of the military.
“We condemn this atro-city against the lumad school in Kitaotao. We pledge all help that we can extend to find justice for the teachers and students affected by this savagery,” Zarate said.
The partylist lawmaker also urged the victims to file criminal, administrative and civil charges before the Ombudsman and regular courts against Cabugnason and the cabal of soldiers who aided him.
“The Department of Education and the local government in Bukidnon have already warned Cabugna-son and the military that they have no authority to shut down this lumad school, much less demolish it. Yet, they still persisted in doing their clearly illegal acts,” Zarate added. “The state of impunity is now running amuck in Mindanao and we have yet to see concrete actions from the government.”
Colmenares expressed concern over the vilification of the lumad school, saying that the accusation of being affiliated with rebel groups has resulted to human rights violations including extrajudicial killings.
The attack against lumad schools are among the issues raised by Manilakbayan 2015, a caravan and mobilization from Mindanao that will arrive in Manila on October 26, 2015. Some 87 lumad schools suffered from various forms of military attack.
“The demolition of this school is a crime against the lumad children,” Colme-nares ended. (PR)