The Makabayan Bloc has asked the House Committee on Human Rights to investigate the dispersal by the PNP of the residents of Baranggay Manggahan, Pasig City.
HR 1265 cites that last August 30, 2017, at around 1:00 p.m., elements of the Eastern Police District (EPD) violently dispersed protesting residents of Balikwas-Kadamay who were seeking a dialogue with Pasig Mayor Robert Eusebio in Barangay Manggahan to air their opposition against the planned demolition of their houses along the banks of the Manggahan Floodway in Barangay Sta. Lucia.
However, instead of conducting a dialogue, police were sent to the area and dispersed the residents who have barricaded the East Bank Road in the said barangay. Reportedly, at least 30 people were hurt during the dispersal, while the police arrested 41 members of urban poor group Kadamay, including 14 women and 10 minors, all were charged with illegal assembly and direct assault.
The protesters, including those arrested, claimed that their houses were set for demolition but no suitable relocation, either on-site or off-site, was planned for them. Housing sites in Calauan, Laguna, were offered to them but they complained of the insufficient livelihood opportunities there and high amortization rates.
The resolution cites that in 2009 former Pres. Macapagal-Arroyo issued Executive Order. 854 repealing PP 1160 and PP 704 by then President Fidel V. Ramos, but in 2011 former Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Jesse Robredo already moved for the revocation of EO 854.
Reportedlt, the demands of the residents are legitimate and the LGU as well as the national agencies concerned with housing programs could have engaged the residents in a more extensive and comprehensive dialogue so that violence could have been prevented.
Speaking to media, Gabriela Party List rep. Emmy de Jesus said, “para sa committee on Human rights dahil nakita namin at naging sakis kami nakilala namin ang biktima ng violent dispersals. marami dito ay talagang nakadananas ng pananakit mula sa kapulisan. pag tinanong namin saan nanggagaling ang command, nanggaling daw ito sa local government.”
Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate said, “usapin din ito ng pananagutan ng pambansang pamahalaan lalong lalo na involved dito sa pabahay at sa siansabi nilang paglilinis ng mahiirap. this is a delagated power mula sa MMDA. kailangan tignan din ang MMDA. busisiin ang aksyong ito.”