A Peasant Leader’s Murder Shatters the ‘Peace’ in Dumaguete

“This shows that there really is military atrocity in Negros,” Ragay said. “We have been telling the different agencies of government about this, like the local government units and the Commission on Human Rights, but this is strongly denied by CHR officer Jess Cañete.”

Ragay added that farmers have been constantly harassed, to the extent that in September of last year there were bombing operations conducted in the border of Sta. Catalina and Payaw, Bayawan, displacing hundreds of residents. Cañete, however, had denied this.

Activists in Cebu city holding an indignation rally Wednesday night. (Photo by Arman Perez)

“Now that we have concrete evidence (of the military atrocity), we hope that they would no longer pretend not to see the problem. And it is sad that the life of Nong Fermin is the evidence that will prove this,” Ragay said.

“We hold the Arroyo government and her goons in the AFP accountable for this death. We are appealing to our representatives and our senators to look into this, that they would give priority to this because this is very alarming,” Ragay said.

“Even though Nong Fermin is no longer with us, we will continue to push for genuine agrarian reform. We will continue his valuable and peaceful methods of working,” Ragay said.

Activists in Cebu city demand justice for Fermin Lorico. (Photo by Arman Perez)

“We are also calling on Governor Gwen Garcia, as chairman of the Regional Peace and Order Council, to make political killings the top agenda in their coming meeting. Since 2001, when she took the responsibility as chairman, there are already 28 cases of extrajudicial killings in Central Visayas, and no action has been made regarding this,” said Vimarie Arcilla of Karapatan Central Visayas.

“She has given her all-out support to the police and the military, but where is her support to the family of the victims?” Arcilla asked. (Bulatlat.com)

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