Palparans prowl and kill in Mindanao

“Ret. Maj. Gen. Jovito Palparan Jr., The Butcher, is personified by the perpetrators of killings and human rights violations in Mindanao. They are Lt. Col. Noel Alexis Bravo and Lt. Dante Jimenez of the 27th IB-Philippine Army who were responsible for the massacre of the two-month pregnant Juvy Capion and her two sons in Tampakan, South Cotabato; Alde Salusad, the leader of the paramilitary group who killed tribal leader and anti-mining activist Jimmy Liguyon in Bukidnon; Lt. Col. Neil Patricio of the 26th IB who was responsible for the CAFGU unit who shot and then tortured to death tribal leader Genesis Ambason in Agusan del Sur,” said Cristina Palabay, Karapatan secretary general. 

Karapatan cited the names of some of the military officers and leaders of paramilitary groups who figured in some of the high-profile cases of extrajudicial killings (EJKs) in the different regions in Mindanao. 
The Committee on Human Rights of the House of Representatives is currently holding a two-day hearing in Davao City which started yesterday, November 8. The military units in Mindanao have been invited by the committee to attend the hearing today which focuses on the numerous cases of EJK in Mindanao.   

“The successive killings of leaders of people’s organizations in Mindanao, mostly peasants and indigenous peoples, have become alarming. Most of those killed were opposed to the operation of foreign large-scale mining companies or other business interests that have caused displacement and economic dislocation among peasants and indigenous peoples,” added Palabay.  

Karapatan’s documentation showed that of the 114 victims of extrajudicial killings (as of September 30, 2012) under the Aquino government, 26 are from the six regions of Mindanao and four of the 26 are children.  The figure does not include the massacre of the Capion family.

“Blood-feeding creatures are still in the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), they don’t vanish when a general, like Jovito Palparan Jr., retires because they are nourished with the blood of their victims, those who were summarily killed and those who were tortured; they don’t vanish just because the AFP publicly mouths ‘respect for human rights’ and ‘iba na kami ngayon’,” Palabay said. 

Palabay stressed that the perpetrators should be charged and jailed. “With these killings, there is nothing new with how the AFP conducts itself, as Noynoy Aquino’s counter-insurgency program Oplan Bayanihan merely continues the trail of blood drawn by Arroyo’s Oplan Bantay Laya. Certainly, we have not seen the last of Palparan because killings and rights violations continue more brazenly.”