Pa of slain Kidapawan farmer sues military witness


MANILA – The father of a farmer killed during the April 1 dispersal in Kidapawan City, North Cotabato filed criminal charges against a military witness.

Ebao Sulang, whose 22-year-old son Darwin was one of the two killed, charged Charlie Pasco with perjury before the Department of Justice (DoJ), Aug. 2.

Pasco, a self-confessed rebel returnee, testified under oath before the Senate Committee on Justice and Human Rights on April 20, claiming that Darwin was a member of the New People’s Army (NPA). Pasco claimed that Darwin went inactive, and that Darwin was carrying a gun during the April 1 dispersal of farmers’ protest.

Ebao has provided statements of witnesses debunking Pasco’s claims. A fellow farmer, 47-year old Lumeriano Agustin witnessed Darwin’s death, Ebao said.

Lawyers and human rights advocates from the National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers (NUPL), Public Interest Law Center (PILC) and Karapatan assisted Ebao in filing the case.

Besides Pasco, at least 94 national and local officials, police and military officers are facing criminal charges for the April 1 incident. On April 25, farmers filed cases of murder, frustrated murder, torture, physical injuries, illegal arrest and detention against perpetrators of the violent dispersal at the Office of the Ombudsman in Mindanao.

To date, no resolution has been released on the cases.

At least two were killed and dozens others were injured when state security forces opened fired at the protesting farmers in Kidapawan City last April 1. Farmers, who came from various parts of North Cotabato, were demanding the release of 15,000 sacks of rice as their crops were destroyed due to months of dry spell. (

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