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Indigenous murders connected with land grabbing

NORZAGARAY (Agencies) : Brother Martin Francisco, who works among the Dumagat people of Sierra Madre, expressed deep concern and regret over the murder of three civilians in Surigao del Sur on September 1.

The murders are believed to have been carried out by the paramilitary group Magahat-Bagani (see page 5).

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Philippine sister to Sierra Leone

MANILA (Agencies) : Sister Bernardita Otibar, from the Camillian congregation, will set foot in Sierra Leone in Africa, a country that was stricken with the deadly Ebola Virus the last year.

She will join Sister Benedetta Odundo Akech, from Kenya, and the Camillian Task Force in Post-Disaster Response in Sierra Leone.

Until recently, Sister Otibar was working in The Philippines among survivors of super Typhoon Haiyan in Basey, Samar, and nearby towns, CBCP News reported.

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New prison for money or convict welfare?

MANILA (Agencies) : The Commission on Prison Pastoral Care has called a government plan to spend 50 billion pesos ($9 billion) on a prison to replace the old National Bilibid Prisons unnecessary and aimed more at the rake off from land development than prisoner welfare.

CBCP news reported the commission as saying that there are other much more practical solutions to decongest the national penitentiary than building a new one.

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Tribal leaders executed under nose of military

DAVAO (Mabuhay) : At around 4.00am on September 1, members of a paramilitary group barged into the Alcadev compound in sitio Han-ayan, Barangay Diatagon, Liangga Town in Surigao Del Sur, waking the entire neighbourhood before aiming their guns at two tribal leaders, Dionel Campos and Aurelio Sinzo, and shooting them in front of the villagers.

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Dignity of all life must be regained

MANILA (Mabuhay) : Luis Cardinal Tagle described abortion as being an attack on human dignity, which he said is one of the important values in terms of respect for creation, at a Mass celebrated in Manila Cathedral on September 1 to mark the first World Day of Prayer of the Care of Creation.

The archbishop of Manila said, “If you are not useful anymore, you are dropped. It is not a contemplation of human dignity.”

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Politics are the issue not law

DAVAO (Mabuhay) : Nancy Catamco, a member of the Philippine congress, broke her silence in the face of accusations made by a colleague of the murdered Father Fausto Tentorio that she provided assistance for two prime suspects in the case, Jimmy and Robert Ato.

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Government ups harassment of Lumads

GINGOOG (Agencies) : The Rural Missionaries of The Philippines is demanding the unconditional release of a volunteer teacher, Daniel Lampusay, and his brother, Ejun, both of whom it claims were arrested illegally and are being held by the 58th Infantry Battalion.

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Solar power companies in land grab

MANILA (Mabuhay) : Announcements of new initiatives of green power generation are usually greeted with anticipation of a cleaner and better environment for both people and nature.

But when they are situated on land whose ownership is already being disputed under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Pro-
gramme, it is a different matter.

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Leave balikbayan boxes alone

MANILA (Agencies) : “By opening those boxes they are exposing the hard-earned goods to abuse,” Bishop Ruperto Santos, the chairperson of the Commission on Migrants and Itinerant People, said in response to an announcement by the Bureau of Customs that it plans to open and tax what is known as balikbayan boxes that migrant workers send back home to their families.

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Mindanao reflects on damaged environment

DAVAO (Agencies) : The Global Catholic Climate Movement jumpstarted its grassroots campaign in various parts of Mindanao between August 4 and 7 in a bid to raise awareness among people on the need to protect their environment in the light of Catholic social teaching.