Iloilo City– Progressive groups denounced the Philippine National Police’s arrests of alleged loiterers or idlers that resulted to the death of an Ilonggo youth and more than five thousand detained.

It has been reported that Genesis Argoncillo, 23 years old, a native of Brgy. Bagongon, Concepcion, Iloilo died after he was arrested and detained by the Quezon City PNP together with other alleged loiterers.

Workers group Kilusang Mayo Uno – Panay said, it is another tactic of the administration to impose Duterte’s tyranny that attack workers and peoples’ rights and liberty.

KMU-Panay added that the administration avoids to solve the root of the problem why loiterers exists. “Tambays” are those workers who have been terminated from work as a result of continuing contractualization, mass lay-offs and those who are in picket lines due to government’s toleration of greedy capitalists in violating workers’ rights.

Roxanne Javellana, spokesperson of KMU-Panay, said that tyranny has become a tool of Duterte to kill the poor. Javellana have decried Duterte’s war on drugs, Marawi siege, Boracay closure and now the crackdown against “tambays”.

Meanwhile, KARAPATAN – Panay said that the PNPs move is tantamount to martial law that violates freedom and human rights. Idlers are now criminalized that whoever found in the streets can be arrested and detained, according to the group.

KADAMAY-Panay also expressed anger over the ‘apparent anti-poor crackdown’. The group said Duterte doesn’t care if the poor starve to death.

KADAMAY added that high prices of basic commodities, lack of decent housing and livelihood, and the inaccessibility of government services burden the poor under the Duterte government.

The progressive groups called for Duterte to resign if government continue to inflict violence against the people without addressing the roots of poverty. The groups warned that Duterte can be ousted by angry Filipinos ‘just like his idol Marcos’. /PT


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