Killing of Ilagan Mayor
The critical views
of slain Ilagan mayor Delfinito Albano and his support to the cause
espoused by activists may have earned him a place in the target list of
death squads responsible for the spate of political killings.
BY ABE ALMIROL
Posted by Bulatlat
ILAGAN CITY — The
militant human rights watchdog Karapatan (Alliance for the Advancement of
People’s Rights) condemned the killing of Ilagan City Mayor Delfinito
“Jojo” Albano, whom they said had supported victims of human rights abuses
of the military.
Albano was ambushed
on June 27 while in Quezon City. The town of Ilagan in Isabela province is
408 kilometers north of Manila.
“We join the masses
in demanding justice for Mayor Albano. We hope that the
investigation will have its due course,” Karapatan staff Grace Bautista
said in a phone interview.
against the formation of the paramilitary Citizens’ Armed Forces
Geographical Units (Cafgu) made him popular among his constituents in the
barangays (villages) along the Forest region and in Hacienda Sta. Isabel
and San Antonio, two vote-rich communities here. Karapatan has reported
many cases of human rights violations in these areas in the past.
Karapatan said Albano
is the first local government chief executive who formed a human rights
committee. Albano is also one of the convenors of the “Save the Valley,
Serve the People Movement”, a regional alliance of environmentalists
concerned in protecting the Sierra Madre Mountains and the Cagayan River.
views and support to the cause espoused by militants may have earned him
enemies. He may have been a part of target list of the death squads
responsible in the spate of political killings, said Bautista.
The PNP is pursuing
an angle connecting the killing to Albano’s anti-drug campaign.
Nordis learned that
Albano had allowed people’s protest marches against government policies,
as a form of exercising their freedom of expression and of peaceable
assembly. He also reportedly supported the peasant clamor against the
spread of genetically modified organism (GMO) crops in Isabela. Nordis/Posted
PRINTER-FRIENDLY VERSION ■
© 2006 Bulatlat
Alipato Media Center
Permission is granted to reprint or redistribute this article, provided
its author/s and Bulatlat are properly credited and notified.