Statement of Rep. Gutierrez on the Kidapawan incident

Maging malinaw tayo: Hindi katanggap-tanggap na may taong namatay at nasaktan sa Kidapawan. Nakakadismaya na nangyari ito, at kailangang gawin natin ang lahat para hindi na ito maulit. Kailangang magkaroon ng isang masusing imbestigasyon, at kailangang parusahan ang may sala. Kailangan ding mabigyan ng permanenteng solusyon ang usapin ng gutom at kahirapan. Pero hindi rin tama na gamitin ang trahedyang ito para isulong ang pulitikal na ambisyon ng iilan.

Hindi kasangkapan ang buhay ng mga magsasaka. Hindi dapat sinasamantala ang kahirapan at gutom nila para magamit sila sa pulitika. Dapat din nating malaman—nilinlang ba ang ating mga magsasaka? Nagamit ba sila para makapagpabida ang ilan? Sa pagsagot ng mga tanong na ito, makikita natin ang buong kwento. Malalaman natin ang lahat ng dapat managot para sa nangyari sa Kidapawan. Ang tunay na hustisya nagsisimula sa katotohanan.

[English]
Let’s be clear: It is not acceptable that people died and were injured in Kidapawan. It is appalling that this happened, and we should do everything we can to make sure this does not happen again. There should be an exhaustive investigation and those responsible should be punished. There should also be a permanent solution to the issue of hunger and poverty. But it is also not right to use this tragedy to further the political ambitions of a few.

Farmers’ lives are not tools. Their poverty and hunger should not be exploited for political ends. We also need to know—were our farmers deceived? Were they used to allow a certain few to grandstand? In answering these questions, we can see the whole story. We will know all who must answer for what happened in Kidapawan. Real justice begins with the truth.
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