Violent attacks on workers
Alipio “Ador” Juat, a workers’ rights advocate and an organiser of the workers’ union Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU), and Elizabeth “Loi” Magbanua, also a full-time organiser for KMU, disappeared in Manila, the Philippines, on 3 May 2022. They had a meeting in Barangay Punturin, Valenzuela, with other labour organisers. They left after the meeting ended at around 7pm and have not been seen since.
Loi and Ador had recently helped organise a campaign for the immediate payment of 10,000 Philippine Pesos (US$182) unemployment assistance for displaced workers and had been building a network to fight demolition threats in the Parola Compound in Tondo, Manila.
Two more prominent organisers of labourers went missing on 3 July. Elgene “Leleng” Mungcal and Ma. Elena “Cha” Cortez Pampoza had both been subject to red tagging, which refers to harassment and persecution because of suspected communist tendencies, death threats and surveillance because of an individual’s activism.
Family members of Ador and Loi filed a petition for a writ which was granted on 22 August by the Supreme Court. The two were believed to be victims of extrajudicial arrest and detention, and the military were thought to be behind their disappearance.
In September, the Court of Appeal ruled that some military officers and other officials were “accountable for the enforced disappearance and continued disappearance of Elizabeth ‘Loi’ Magbanua and Alipio ‘Ador’ Juat”.