Justice, human rights office to solve extra-judicial killings-A A +A
Friday, December 10, 2010
JUSTICE Secretary Leila De Lima and Commission on Human Rights (CHR) head Etta Rosales are set to arrive in the province on December 15 for the signing of a memorandum of agreement (MOA) for the creation of the Multi-Quick Response Team to address the issue on extra-judicial killings.
Mate Espina, executive assistant of Governor Alfredo Marañon Jr., said the three bishops from the three dioceses in the province, namely Bishop Vicente Navarra of Bacolod, Bishop Patricio Buzon of Kabankalan, and Bishop Jose Advincula of San Carlos City, will also attend the MOA signing.
The Multi-Quick Response Team headed by Marañon will be composed of different sectors, such as the military, police, human rights groups, church and non-government organizations.
Meanwhile, Gabrialla party-list Representative Luzviminda Ilagan cited the report by the Center for Media Freedom and Responsibility that 36 media killings were recorded in 2009, the same year when the Maguindanao massacre occurred. This year, four cases of media killings have been recorded.
Over 1,000 cases of extra-judicial killings were recorded under the Arroyo administration while, barely a hundred days into the recently installed Aquino administration, seven activists have been killed, Ilagan added.
Activists and militants, as well as the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial Killings, attribute this to the government’s counter insurgency program, Oplan Bantay Laya (Operation Freedom Watch), a policy that remains in place to date. (Teresa Ellera-Dulla)
Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on December 10, 2010.