CHR urged to probe killing of a farmer in Negros Occidental

Crispin Tingal Jr. (Photo from Paghimutad)

“We are asking the CHR to extend help to the bereaved family of farmer Crispin Tingal and provide them with due assistance.”


MANILA – A peasant rights group urged the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) to look into the killing of a farmer in Negros Occidental last May 3.

According to news reports, the 94th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army claimed that Crispin Tingal Jr., a farmer, was killed in an encounter on May 3 in Himamaylan City, Negros Occidental.

Tingal’s family however denied the military’s allegation and asserted that he was a civilian and not a member of the New People’s Army. A report by Negros-based media group Paghimutad also said that Tingal was a farmer and a father to seven children.

“We are asking the CHR to extend help to the bereaved family of farmer Crispin Tingal and provide them with due assistance,” Tanggol Magsasaka said in a statement.

Paghimutad reported that Tingal was tied up, beaten, and shot dead. One of Tingal’s sons was also reportedly chased by members of the Philippine Army and was shot at but he managed to escape.

The incident happened after Tingal reportedly attended a seminar on fish production organized by the Kabankalan City Agriculture Office.

Tingal’s wife also said that they went into hiding near the riverbank after hearing the gunshots. When it was dark, she and her children went to the evacuation site in sitio Paloypoy, barangay Hilamonan, where an estimated 38 other families also took refuge.

According to Tanggol Magsasaka, at least 65 families evacuated their homes in the same community due to armed clashes.

The next morning, May 4, Tingal’s wife heard the announcement from 94th IB Philippine Army Commander Van Donald Almonte that her husband was killed in action in sitio Ulo-Tuburan, Barangay Buenavista, and was tagged as an NPA member.

September 21 Movement in Negros also condemned the killing of Tingal. They urged the local government of Kabankalan to assist the victims’ families.

Tingal was a member of the United Church of Christ in the Philippines (UCCP) and was also active in sustainable livelihood programs spearheaded by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

Tanggol Magsasaka said Tingal’s killing is the latest incident in a series of rights violations committed by the 94th IBPA in Southern Negros.

The group said the same military unit was responsible for the abduction of peasant organizer Leonardo Sermona and the killing of Jose Gonzales as well as harassment against farmers and sugar workers in various villages in Binalbagan and Himamaylan cities.

International humanitarian law violations

Human rights group Karapatan meanwhile condemned the reported series of violations on rights and international humanitarian law where civilians are increasingly being victimized in what they described as Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s brutal counterinsurgency war.

Aside from the killing of Tingal, Karapatan also cited the case of two civilians killed in barangay Sangay, Palapag, Northern Samar.

According to reports reaching Karapatan, Joel Recare and Oscar Alastoy were in the area to work as chainsaw helpers. But the Philippine National Police-Special Action Force reported that they were slain in an alleged encounter on May 5 in Sitio Ibaliw, Barangay Capacujan of the said town.

However, the village chief of barangay Capacujan vouched for the victims, saying they were not armed rebels and were not on any watchlist.

Karapatan also said that the victims’ families complained that the PNP-SAF took more than 24 hours to deliver the decomposing bodies to the Regional Health Unit.

Meanwhile, in Kalinga, Cordillera Human Rights Alliance received reports on the gruesome mutilation of the body of an alleged NPA member reportedly killed in a firefight with the military in Balbalan, on May 3.

Karapatan said the victim’s head and limbs were missing and only the torso has been recovered.

Karapatan reiterated that international humanitarian law strictly prohibits the mutilation and the desecration of the remains of combatants and even the killing or harming of hors de combat or a combatant who is no longer capable of fighting because he has surrendered, been captured, wounded, unconscious or ill.

Mutilation is a grievous violation of IHL whether the victim was decapitated and his limbs hacked off before or after he was killed, Karapatan said in a statement.

“We denounce these war crimes and all other violations of human rights and international humanitarian law. We likewise call on the Commission on Human Rights to conduct thorough investigations into these and other reported violations,” the group said. (RTS, RVO) (

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