BAYAN MUNA DEMANDS SURFACING OF TWO ABDUCTED CAMPAIGNERS IN BULACAN
Accuses AFP and PNP of terrorizing progressive and opposition supporters
Bayan Muna chairman and Makabayan senatorial candidate Neri Colmenares and Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Isagani Zarate today condemned the abduction and demanded the immediate release of John Griefen Arlegui, 20, and Reynaldo Remias, Jr., 24, who were abducted by suspected state agents as they were campaigning in Angat, Bulacan yesterday.
According to eyewitnesses, the two urban poor activists were accosted at gunpoint between 10:00 to 11:00 in the morning while putting up campaign posters of Colmenares and Bayan Muna along Angat-Pandi Road.
The urban poor group Kadamay said that Arlegui and Remias were forced into a red car with no license plates by armed men in plainclothes, right in front of the Iglesia ni Cristo church in Brgy. Sta Cruz, Angat, Bulacan.
“We condemn this abduction of our campaigners. We suspect state agents to be behind it. They are the only ones with the motive and capability to do this, as they have done in the past,” said Colmenares.
“The AFP and the PNP have continously harassed our organizations and have been identified in numerous abductions of our members and volunteers in the area, like those of Joey Torres, UP students Karen Empeno and Sherlyn Cadapan, and Jonas Burgos, all of whom remain missing till this day,“ added Colmenares.
“The Duterte government is using the AFP and PNP to harrass, intimidate and silence progressive and opposition candidates who are at the forefront of exposing the failures and anomalies of the administration and in giving our people alternatives ,” added the Makabayan senatorial bet.
“We call on our uniformed personnel to disobey orders for them to abduct, intimidate, harrass or publicly vilify progressive and opposition candidates. Those are prohibited acts and not part of your job,” said Colmenares.
For his part, Zarate said AFP officials like Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations Brigadier General Antonio Parlade “are illegaly campaigning against progressive party list candidates in the 2019 elections, in utter violation of our election laws and COMELEC rules.”
“If Parlade has any proof of wrongdoing on our part, he should file the necessary complaints in the courts and not parade around town casting all sorts of intrigue and accusations,” said Zarate.###