Philippines: Groups condemn the murder of labour organiser, Dennis Sequena; senator calls for investigation

Dennis Sequena was a labor organiser working for Partido Manggagawa. He was gunned down by unidentified persons while he was conducting a labour rights seminar with workers in Cavite. 

Various groups have released statements of condemnation and urgent calls for government to investigate Sequena's death and the growing number of killings of activists and leaders fighting for workers' rights.

To date, Senator Risa Hontiveros has filed a resolution calling for an investigation of Sequena's murder and other killings involving labour rights activists.

The report on the murder, groups' statements, and a copy of the Senate resolution are linked below.

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Article
4 June 2019

Business & Human Rights Resource Centre condemns the killing of Filipino labour leader, Dennis Sequeña

Author: Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

Business & Human Rights Resource Centre condemns the violent murder of Dennis Sequeña. We send our condolences to his family and colleagues at this difficult time...

"Dennis stood on the frontlines when workers were harassed and threatened. His brutal death reminds us how dangerous the frontlines are for labour leaders and workers across the world."

"We are witnessing a mounting erosion of space for worker organising and violence against labour rights defenders, governments and business must take this seriously."

Golda Benjamin, Southeast Asia Researcher at Business & Human Rights Resource

...

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Article
2 June 2019

Philippines: Groups call on labour minister to convene Nat'l Tripartite Monitoring Board to investigate labour-related killings

Author: Partido Manggagawa

"Groups call on Bello to act on killings of labor leaders," 03 June 2019

...Partido Manggagawa (PM) called on Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello for action on the continued killings of labor leaders a day after the fatal shooting of a union organizer in Cavite during a meeting of workers.
 
“We demand action from Secretary Bello to stop the series of extra-judicial killings of labor activists and trade unionists. As Labor Secretary, he must raise a voice against these killings. And we ask him to immediately convene the National Tripartite Monitoring Body (NTMB) which has the mandate to probe labor-related EJK’s,” stated Rene Magtubo, PM national chair.
 
The labor coalition Nagkaisa has likewise called on the Department of Labor and Employment for urgent response on the death of Sequena. The NTMB was formed in response to the recommendation of the International Labor Organization High Level Mission (ILO HLM) in 2009 to investigate violations of the freedom of association and killings of trade unionists.
 
“The shooting of Dennis while he was conducting a labor rights seminar is a particular blatant act of violence against workers exercising their freedom of association. This should not be happening 10 years after the ILO HLM,” Magtubo insisted.
 
Sequena is a National Council member of PM and vice chair of its provincial chapter in Cavite. He is the second PM labor activist killed since 2016. Orlando Abangan, PM-Cebu leader and informal worker organizer of the labor center Sentro, was shot and killed in September 2016.
 
 

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Article
2 June 2019

Philippines: Senator Hontiveros-Baraquel

Author: Senator Risa Hontiveros-Baraquel, Philippines

Senator Ana Theresia Hontiveros-Baraquel, on 03 June 2019, filed a resolution for the Senate to investigate, in aid of legislation, the spate of killings of labour leaders and labour organisers. This was filed a day after the murder of labour organiser, Dennis Sequena, while he was conducting a labour rights seminar with workers in Cavite.

The resolution can be accessed here.

 

 

Article
2 June 2019

Philippines: SENTRO condemns murder of Dennis Sequena; joins call for gov't to investigate rising deaths of labour activists

Author: SENTRO

"SENTRO condems the Killing of a Union Organizer in Cavite," 02 June 2019

The labor group Partido Manggagawa (PM) condemned the killing of the vice chairperson of its Cavite chapter. The group called on the authorities to investigate and solve the killing.

Dennis Sequena was shot and killed earlier today in Brgy. Bunga, Tanza, Cavite while meeting a group of workers. He was shot by a gunman who arrived riding in tandem on a motorcycle. The gunman and his accomplice escaped using the same motorcycle. Sequena was brought by his PM colleagues to the General Trias Maternity and Pediatric Hospital but doctors failed to revive him.

“We call on the police to act with dispatch and catch the perpetrators of the crime. Dennis is a community leader and has no personal enemies. We believe this is an extra-judicial killing for Dennis’ work as a labor organizer,” stated Rene Magtubo, PM national chair.

Sequena was a union organizer and partylist nominee of the group in the just concluded elections. He was active in assisting Cavite workers facing labor problems and advising workers who are unionizing as a means to improve wages and working conditions.

Magtubo also called on Congress to launch a congressional investigation on the extra-judicial killing of labor organizers and union activists.

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Article
2 June 2019

Philippines: Unidentified gunman kills union organiser during a workers' meeting

Author: Rosette Adel, Philippine Star

"Labor organizer shot dead in Cavite during meeting with workers," 02 June 2019

A labor union organizer was killed...while conducting a meeting with workers in Cavite...

According to Partido Manggagawa, Dennis Sequena, vice chairman of its Cavite chapter, was shot dead while he was meeting with a group of workers in Barangay Bunga, Tanza, Cavite.

Sequena was shot by an unidentified gunman who arrived and left in a motorcycle.

The victim was a union organizer and a party-list nominee of Partido Mangagawa in the concluded 2019 midterm polls.

PM urged the authorities to investigate the killing of Sequena.

“We call on the police to act with dispatch and catch the perpetrators of the crime. Dennis is a community leader and has no personal enemies. We believe this is an extrajudicial killing for Dennis’ work as a labor organizer,” Rene Magtubo, Partido ng Manggagawa national chair said in a release.

Magtubo also asked the Congress to probe the extrajudicial killing of labor organizers and union activists.

Read the full post here

Article
2 June 2019

Labor group condemns killing of union organizer in Cavite

Author: Partido Manggagawa

The labor group Partido Manggagawa (PM) condemned the killing of the vice chairperson of its Cavite chapter. The group called on the authorities to investigate and solve the killing.
 
Dennis Sequena was shot and killed earlier today in Brgy. Bunga, Tanza, Cavite while meeting a group of workers. He was shot by a gunman who arrived riding in tandem on a motorcycle. The gunman and his accomplice escaped using the same motorcycle. Sequena was brought by his PM colleagues to the General Trias Maternity and Pediatric Hospital but doctors failed to revive him.
 
“We call on the police to act with dispatch and catch the perpetrators of the crime. Dennis is a community leader and has no personal enemies. We believe this is an extra-judicial killing for Dennis’ work as a labor organizer,” stated Rene Magtubo, PM national chair.
 
Sequena was a union organizer and partylist nominee of the group in the just concluded elections. He was active in assisting Cavite workers facing labor problems and advising workers who are unionizing as a means to improve wages and working conditions.
 
Magtubo also called on Congress to launch a congressional investigation on the extra-judicial killing of labor organizers and union activists.

Read the full post here