Official statement of the Commission on Social Advocacies on the unjust arrest and detention of Amelia Pond, RMP-SMR Regional Coordinator
So the poor have hope, and injustice shuts her mouth.
The Cebu Archdiocesan Commission on Social Advocacies condemns in the strongest possible terms the unjust arrest of Rural Missionaries of the Philippines (RMP) Regional Coordinator of Southern Mindanao, Amelia Pond. Amelia Pond was arrested by elements of the Crime Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) yesterday noon, outside the Living the Gospel Renewal Center shortly after the 28th National Assembly of the RMP culminated.
Ms. Amelia Pond is a lay worker of the RMP. She is a living example of a Christian committed to serve the least and the neglected of our society, the Lumad. Her years of unselfish service paved the way for the socio-economic and educational development of the Lumad. Through the RMP, Ms. Amelia Pond managed to facilitate the establishment of Alternative Learning Systems where the Lumad can learn literacy and numeracy skills for free. She is also a devoted teacher of the Lumad.
She consistently stood with the Lumad in their struggle to preserve their ancestral domains against local and foreign plunderers who only seek to extract enormous profits out from the mineral-rich areas of the Lumad. Without hesitations, she confronted state elements who are complicit with big time mining and logging businesses in the Lumad areas, as Christ also confronted the powers that be during His time. Consequently, she earned the ire of the greedy and the unjust, thus fabricating lies about her identity, wilfully vilifying her name, and unjustly trumping up charges against her.
This act of injustice is an unchristian work which only aims to harass selfless Christians committed to the plight of the poor. We demand the immediate release of Ms. Amelia Pond! Dismiss all trumped up charges against her!
Rev. Fr. Nazario "Ace" Vocales
The RMP is a national organization, inter-congregational and inter-diocesan in character, of women and men religious, priests and lay. We live and work with the peasants (farmers, fisherfolks, indigenous peoples and agricultural workers).