The Metal Workers Alliance of the Philippines vehemently condemns the brutal killing of Dandy Miguel, President of the Lakas ng Nagkakaisang Manggagawa ng Fuji Electric Philippines (LNMFEP), an affiliate of MWAP, and Vice President of PAMANTIK-KMU.

On the evening of March 28, Dandy was shot 8 (eight) times on his body while riding his motorcycle on his way home from work in Calamba, Laguna. The incident happened just three weeks after the so-called #BloodySunday last March 7, in CALABARZON region wherein 9 activists where killed and six others were arrested during a synchronized operation by police in different provinces in the region.

Dandy, 35 years old, is a young dedicated labour leader. In the last decade, he has been at the forefront of workers fight for regular jobs, living wage, health, safety and welfare not just in his company and in the province, but in the entire country. Through his work as union president in a leading electronics company, he sought to raise the labor standards in the electronics industry. Amid the pandemic, Dandy led a challenging fight for a meaningful collective bargaining agreement (CBA). His leadership proved effective as their union held collective action protests which prodded the company to heed the demands of the union and conclude the CBA on December 2020.

In the midst of heightened repression and threats to his life, Dandy did not waiver in his trade union work. Instead, he bravely exposed the crackdown on trade unionists and activists in CALABARZON. In the press conference before the Commission on Human Rights last March 15, he was among the trade union leaders who filed cases before the Commission and sought justice for the victims of the #BloodySunday in CALABARZON.

Indeed, the murder of Dandy Miguel is yet another proof of the widespread culture of impunity and hostile climate for free and independent trade unionism in the country. Such oppressive environment is perpetuated by the the policies of the Duterte administration—notably the Anti-Terrorism Law, the National Task Force to End Local Communist Conflict—enabling the military, police and followers, to malign trade unionists and unarmed activists as terrorists and to use sheer force to undermine our democratic freedoms and endanger our basic human rights.

The violent demise inflicted upon Dandy is equally an affront to the aspirations of every Filipino worker for decent work, just and equitable income, and respect of trade union rights, which he fought for up to his last breath. He was. in fact, wearing a shirt printed with the slogan, “Sahod, Trabaho at Karapatan, Ipaglaban” (“Fight for Wage, Jobs and Rights!”), on the evening he was killed.

As we mourn the death of Dandy, the 50th trade unionist to be extra-judicially killed under the Duterte administration, we express our rage and amplify our calls for justice. We call to stop the killings and other forms of attacks against trade unionists and activists in the Philippines. We enjoin workers and trade unions in the country and across the world to unite in the fight for justice and accountability. Let us fight to end this widespread violence and lawlessness that is intended to further curtail our rights and undermine our fight for social justice. Let us defend our freedoms and democratic rights.#

Justice for Dandy Miguel! Stop the Killings!

Trade unionism is a right! Stop trade union repression!

Anti-Terrorism Law, Ibasura! Sahod, Trabaho at Karapatan, Ipaglaban!

Re-posted from here.