Partido Manggagawa Demands the Release of Five Unionists Arrested in Cebu
30 November 2020
[...] Partido Manggagawa (Labor Party) demanded the release of unionists Dennis Derige, Myra Opada, Joksan Branzuela, Jonel Labrador, and Cristito Pangan.
Opada is the union president at Philippine Light Leather, Pangan is the union president at First Glory Apparel while Derige, Branzuela and Labrador are union organizers.
[...] Last Friday, Nov. 27th, some 300 workers of the First Glory Apparel were fired -- the latest in the surge of mass layoffs at garment firms in the zone in the past three months. The Sports City group of companies laid off 4,000 workers, Yuenthai fired 200 workers, FCO laid off 100 workers and Kor Landa retrenched 67 workers.
Rene Magtubo of PM called for an end to the repression of labor rights and the harassment of human rights defenders. "Activism is not terrorism," said Magtubo. "This is precisely the theme of today's national and global commemoration of Bonifacio Day."
The arrest of the PM Cebu labor organizers underscores the escalating attacks on workers' rights in the country, said Magtubo. "It adds to the unsolved killings of unionists, busting of unions, and red-tagging of union activists."
Last year, PM-Cavite labor organizer Dennis Sequena was brutally murdered while facilitating a labor seminar. No one has been arrested, much less charged with his murder.