/ 29 June 2021

THE ALLIANCE of Concerned Teachers on Monday welcomed the dismissal of the attempted homicide case filed against one of its members, Lai Consad, who was implicated in an alleged attack by the New People’s Army last year.

Consad, the secretary general of ACT in Caraga, was arrested and detained in March this year.

The Tubay-Santiago Municipal Trial Court in Agusan del Norte approved the recommendation of the provincial prosecutor to dismiss the complaint filed against her for “total lack of evidence.”

“The court’s decision on Teacher Lai’s case supports our belief that the ridiculous charge against her was only meant to harass and persecute her for her work as an ACT unionist, and sow terror among teachers. This is a clear case of the state’s deplorable weaponization of the law against critics and dissenters,” Raymond Basilio, the group’s secretary general, said.

ACT said it received reports that military officials presented Consad’s case as proof of the group’s involvement with the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army.

“The development in Teacher Lai’s case render these allegations false and without any basis, much like every other claim by Duterte’s rabid red-tagging task force against ACT and our leaders. These attacks are nothing but attempts to silence us and weaken our organization through wanton violation of our constitutionally protected rights and liberties. We will not take this sitting down,” Basilio said.

He said that ACT is preparing countercharges for the violations committed against Consad.