POLICE shot and killed two activists who were caught spray-painting anti-Duterte slogan in Albay.
Human rights group Defend Bicol identified the fatalities as Jemar Palero, 22, and Marlon Naperi, 38, members of Organisasyon ng mga Magsasaka and Albay People’s Organization, respectively.
Defend Bicol rejected the police claim that Palero and Naperi resisted arrest and engaged the arresting officers in a firefight.
Defend Bicol said the cops executed the victims after they were caught painting protest art at Banao Bridge hours after President Rodrigo Duterte delivered his final State of the Nation Address.
“Dissent may take on many forms, but to kill innocent unarmed civilians in the dead of the night for painting the people's call is purely fascist and brutal,” the group said.
Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Guillermo Eleazar said he has ordered the Internal Affairs Service (IAS) to look into the matter and file charges against the involved policemen, if necessary.
The report that reached Eleazar’s office said the two activists were armed and tried to fire at the police while they were being arrested.
Eleazar also ordered Bicol Police Regional Office Director Jonnel Estomo to place the police personnel involved in the incident under restrictive custody to ensure their cooperation in the investigation. (Third Anne Peralta-Malonzo / SunStar Philippines)