Labor rights group Center for Trade Union and Human Rights vehemently condemns the illegal arrest of Ruby Lacadman, organizer and member of urban poor group Kadamay, on March 29, 2018, at her home in Barangay Cacutud, Mabalacat City, Pampanga. Lacadman was forcibly taken by the police and military on the basis of defective warrant of arrest for murder issued by RTC 6th Judicial Regional Branch 60, Cadiz City in Negros Occidental. The said warrant bore the name of a certain “Ruby Palabrica y Quitason’ which is among the listed name in Duterte’s fake terror list.

“The illegal arrest of Ruby Lacadman clearly shows how dangerous this fake terror list can be as it places anyone as target for arrest, harassment, and malicious label as “terrorist” or enemies of the state. What disturbs us more is that Lacadman’s case could only be a start of many looming cases of illegal arrest, harassment and persecution of activists and rights defenders,” Daisy Arago, Executive Director, said.

CTUHR said that the arrest of Lacadman indicates an orchestrated and escalating attacks of Duterte administration against organized masses and critics. This incident is not isolated from the red-tagging and harassment the military and police have been inflicting against workers and union organizers, afilliated to labor center Kilusang Mayo Uno, of which Duterte himself repeatedly tagged as “communist. fronts”. This mirrors incidents of red-tagging of union members in a banana plantation in Compostela Valley and the abduction of labor organizer Maoj Maga last February 22.

“The Duterte regime has not wavered its attacks on the poor. It has fully abandoned any chance for achieving justice and long-lasting peace. He reneged his promise of ending contractualization, burdened the poor with TRAIN law, criminalized human rights defender and activists through fake terror list, further exposing himself as tyrant and anti-people, Arago said.

The labour group calls for the immediate release of Lacadman and the dropping of charges against her. It also joins local and international organizations in calling for the junking of the government’s fake terror list.###