Student support grows as Lumad camp-out enters 5th day

Student supporting the Lumad and Manilakbayan 2015 continue to increase as the camp-out in the University of the Philippines (UP) – Diliman entered its fifth day.


At around 7 a.m., students joined the Lumad in planting young Narra trees. According to the Lumad, this is a symbolic action to show their gratitude to the UP community for zealously welcoming them in the university .


“We have learned a lot from the Lumad struggle. As the kampuhan in the university nears its end, we vow that we will continue to join in their plight against plunder of natural resources by foreign corporations and fascism perpetrated by the regime,” said LFS UP-Diliman Chapter Chairperson Ben Galil Te.


“The people’s unity and struggle is as mighty as the Narra tree. We will not bow down to different attacks on our rights. We will continue to stand-up,” he added.


Afterwards the UP Pep Squad performed their routines in front of the Lumad. After lunch time, UP students also offered a medical mission for the participants of Manilakbayan.


“In various forms, we organize different activities to help the Lumad and the people of Mindanao in continuing their call for justice. We are determined to push for our immediate demands,” Te said.


By 4 p.m. the Lumad and participants of Manilakbayan held a cultural program to offer cultural presentations to express their appreciation to all who supported them during their stay in the university. At past 6 p.m. they moved to Brgy. UP Campus to stay for another 2 days as they prepare their camp-out in Liwasan Bonifacio after November 1.


“The stories of the Lumad inspire our youth to intensify our campaign for our democratic rights. Amid state violence and terrorism, they never gave up on their right to free education and self-determination. Armed with this determination, we the youth will continue to assert the immediate pull-out of AFP and other para-military forces in Mindanao and re-opening of the Lumad alternative schools,” said LFS National Chairperson Charisse Banez.


Banez said that there will be school activities in different universities and colleges in Manila after the Lumad’s stay in UP-Diliman. She noted that there will be mini camp-outs, discussions, exhibits, and protests in private universities like University of Sto. Tomas, De La Salle University, Lyceum University, and University of the East. Also, there will be a week-long activity in the Polytechnic University of the Philippines starting next week.


She labeled Aquino “the most evil and wicked in the country today”. Banez noted that as the Aquino regime is nearing the end, the human rights crisis concerning the Lumad is becoming even more appalling. She added that Aquino’s economic and political interest is prompting him to do anything, even kill our countrymen, in order to open our lands, mineral deposits, and natural resources to foreign corporations


“Let us end Aquino’s tyranny! As days pass by, the Aquino government is showing us that the only hope we can rely on is the historic strength of our collective action. We call on the entire nation to link up arms and join the fight of our Lumad brothers and sisters,” said Banez.


Banez added that protests in the Armed Forces of the Philippines General Headquarters, Department of Education, and other government agencies are also set in the following days. She added that the youth is also preparing for a nationwide campus walk-outs for education and justice on the November 13.


“We will not stop until our demands are met. We will ensure that justice is served,” Banez ended.