Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) demands that Royal Mollucan Realty Holdings Inc. drop the baseless charges it filed against 14 farmers from Norzagaray, Bulacan. “The charges are completely unfounded and are obviously just meant to harass and terrorize farmers who adamantly assert their right to the lands they till,” KMP National Chairperson Danilo Ramos says.
Six of the charged farmers from Sitio Compra, Bgy. San Mateo, Norzagaray, Bulacan were arrested for accusations of theft last January 19. A total of ten from the 14 charged have bailed, and the six arrested were freed last January 21. “The police even delayed the processing of bail by withholding the issuance of necessary documents. It seems as if the Norzagaray PNP enjoys pestering farmers. They were the same unit which illegally arrested and jailed our volunteers about to deliver relief goods for farmers last April 2020,” Ramos insists.
The 14 farmers were charged with theft by the Royal Mollucan Realty Holdings Inc. last January 2020. They however insist that they were simply picking fruits from trees they themselves planted. Last October 2019, the armed goons of Royal Mollucan fenced off the farmers’ lots, barring them from entering and ejecting them from their homes. “In fact, it is the Royal Mollucan who stole the farmers’ lands in the first place. Matapos nilang nakawin ang lupa ng mga magsasaka, mga magsasaka pa ngayon ang pagbibintangan nilang magnanakaw!” Ramos exclaims.
The charged farmers are among the suppliers of fruits and vegetables for the Bagsakan Online Farmer’s Market. They are still calling for donations for the legal fund in facing their case.
KMP insists that the Villars must be behind the land grabbing of the contested 75.5-hectare productive agricultural lands as the property sits adjacent to huge Villar-owned properties.
“Royal Mollucan and their Villar bosses should drop the trumped-up charges against the farmers. They should stop tormenting the farmers and let them plant and harvest their crops in peace,” Ramos ends. #