Del Monte pineapple farm in Davao City is latest NPA attack victim

Posted on April 19, 2017

FARM COMPANIES and workers have denounced the continued attacks being carried out by members of the New People’s Army (NPA), the latest of which was on a Del Monte Philippines pineapple plantation in Baguio District, Davao City last week where the rebels burned about P4 million in farm equipment. The police report said about 30 rebels stormed the farm and burned two harvesters and seized a shotgun of a security guard just four days after the two sides agreed on implementing a temporary cease-fire, although the agreement has yet to take effect as the two sides have yet to set the ground rules. In a press statement released Monday, Eduardo Maningo, a spokesperson of agrarian beneficiaries, called on government to intensify its protection of farm workers and the farms. “The safety of our families and our livelihood are threatened. If the government fails to address this problem, businesses can leave and we will lose our jobs,” said Mr. Maningo, adding that their problems have been mounting as the industry is also facing infestations and the impact of climate change. Other recent NPA attacks were on a cold storage plant in General Santos City on March 30, a banana processing plant in Compostela Valley on Feb. 5, a pineapple plantation in Bukidnon 20 days later, three container vans loaded with fruits in Compostela Valley on March 25, a spray plane in Surigao del Norte also last month and the farm of Sumifru Philippines in Bukidnon on March 27. -- Carmelito Q. Francisco