Yesterday, a series of protest actions were conducted by various progressive organizations in Albay led by Bayan-Bikol.
First was the protest action of Kalipunan ng Damayang Mahihirap (KADAMAY-Bikol) against the Sunwest Group’s Embarcadero, a commercial waterfront development project comprised of “retail, restaurants, markets, a major civic space and landmark lighthouse, with a future waterfront hotel and spa, and an Information Technology (IT) Park with an estimated 8,000-seat Call Center.”
The construction of the Embarcadero led to the displacement of urban poor and fishing communities in Legaspi City. Fisherfolks lost their livelihoods when their fishing grounds and docking ports were claimed by the developers. Aside from the Sunwest Group, Pres. Arroyo’s family also invested in Embarcadero.
Next was the protest of workers who were laid-off Pacific Cordage Corp., a fiber company owned by a Taiwanese in Sto. Domingo, Albay. The Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU-Bikol) and the laid-off workers picketed the office of the Department of Labor and Employment in Legaspi City after their request for DOLE to facilitate a dialogue was denied.
Simultaneous with these protests, a lightning rally was conducted at the Legaspi City airport with the arrival of US Ambassador Kristie Kenny. All the photos courtesy of Vince Casilihan.