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3 May 2010 No Comment

December 2, 2010


ACT Teachers Party-List Representative Antonio Tinio condemned the excessive use of force and the destruction of private property perpetrated by the Philippine National Police when they broke up a protest action of kuliglig drivers in Manila yesterday afternoon.

“Police brutality was clearly on display during the dispersal and arrest of protesters. TV footage showed clear instances of policemen inflicting excessive force to subdue and arrest individuals,” said Tinio. “Furthermore, the use of a police truck to crush some of the pedicabs was totally gratuitous and completely unjustifiable.”

The ACT Teachers representative called on Manila Police District Chief Supertinendent Roberto Rongavilla to identify and sanction those responsible for the acts of brutality as well as the destruction of the pedicabs.

Alyansa ng Nagkakaisang Pedicab at Kuliglig Drivers (Alnapedku) are protesting Manila mayor Alfredo Lim’s Executive Order No. 17 banning the three-wheeled vehicles on the city’s main roads. But Alnapedku pointed out that majority of their passengers can be found on prominent areas, not side streets.

Dispersed by water canon, police arrested 16 people. Detained overnight at the Manila Police District Headquarters, those with injuries were deprived of medical attention. Some claimed to be innocent bystanders and vendors who were indiscriminately arrested by authorities. Around 270 kuligligs were impounded by local government officials.

“These toiling kuliglig drivers are only fighting for their livelihood. Instead of drastic measures that would deprive them of their jobs, the Manila city government should exert greater efforts to find a compromise that’s acceptable to the parties involved. The fact that they are thriving means that they are providing a service that the community considers useful. What happened yesterday displayed a lack of understanding and compassion for the plight of the poor on the part of the Manila city government,” said Tinio. #



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