DAVAO CITY – Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte told human rights groups here that he would urge the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) to immediately investigate on the cases of rights violations which included the recent killing of Mandaya father and son in New Bataan, Compostela Valley.
Rights groups together with families and relatives of victims of militarization in the region had a dialogue with Duterte Friday. The mayor also acts as chairman of the Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC).
Hanimay Suazo, secretary general of Karapatan said that “militarization and righs abuses in the region are happening on an almost daily basis and we trust that Mayor Duterte, as the current chair of RPOC, could help the victims.”
During the dialogue, various cases of militarization in the region were shared by the victims and their families including the harassment of paramilitary group Alamara in Kapalong, Davao del Norte last September; forced evacuation of Indigenous Peoples and red-tagging of pablo survivors in Baganga, Davao Oriental, and the killing of Bernardo Clarion, Sr. in barangay Talisay, Mandug, Davao City last Oct 1, 2014.
Duterte said that he would personally visit the areas to get the side of the military and to start the investigation.
He added that he will set another dialogue inviting all concerned parties including the different Infantry Divisions mentioned by the victims.
“If only the admin [Aquino administration] pursued the peace process to the CPP-NDFP-NPA, these [human rights violations] will not happen,” Duterte said.
Meanwhile, Pastor Sarly Templado of Exodus for Justice and Peace presented to Duterte during the dialogue the request of support for their peace education campaign to be launched in the city.
Templado explained that this would help in informing the public of the peace process between the Philippine government and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP).
Templado said that the launching, to be held next month, will invite members of peace advocates and families of human rights victims from different provinces in the region.(davaotoday.com)