MANILA, Philippines — Farmers from Calatagan, Batangas who are protesting the conversion of their lands into a mining area have reached the fourth day of their march to Manila, where they want to bring their plight directly to the national government.
The Calatagan farmers’ Lakbay Kalampag para sa Lupang Pansakahan reached Lipa City Thursday afternoon, where supporters from the Church, labor groups and other nongovernment organizations awaited them.
In Lipa, the farmers will be hosted by Archbishop Manuel Arguelles who will celebrate a Mass for them on Friday.
The prelate expressed his support for the farmers even as early as last year and has been actively negotiating with the government on behalf of the farmers. He is expected to issue a pastoral statement on the Calatagan march during the Mass.