Manila, Philippines – Anakpawis Party-list Representative Ariel “Ka Ayik” Casilao slammed the latest attempt of police chief Oscar Albayalde to diffuse the snowballing public outrage against the atrocious peasant mass killing in Negros Oriental by red baiting and accussing progressive groups of fuelling hate against the government. This was after lawmakers from the Makabayan bloc demanded his resignation and held him responsible for the deaths of 14 peasant victims.
“Albayalde is incriminating himself as philosophically impoverished and only left with the redbaiting card as reply to the overwhelming demands for justice to the victims,” the lawmaker said in a press statement.
He said that Makabayan lawmakers demanded his resignation as part of fully supporting the demands of the families of the victims for justice and accountability.
“No justice could be served when the very official that accused and maligned the victims without sufficient evidence is still with authority,” he said.
The lawmaker also cited, that on the “Sagay Massacre” incident in October last year, that left nine farm workers dead, Albayalde swiftly blamed the New People’s Army, and accused the National Federation of Sugar Workers as its front, supposedly as part of a plan to instigate public outrage against the government.
“It is Albayalde who is on a ‘black propaganda’ campaign against progressives and supporters of the victims,” he said.
He also noted that the relief of “sacrificial lambs” or local police executives in Negros Oriental is admission of their weak defense against the attestations of families who are witnesses, that the victims were “summarily executed.”
“Even the Commmission on Human Rights’ initial findings corroborate the witnessess’ testimonies, that there was a pattern, the family members were dragged out of their houses, and the victims were left alone and killed,” he said.
He said that Albayalde is suffering with poverty of philosophy, that he could not engage with the latest arguments or information on the incidents.
“He is trying to pull back at their archaic defense that the operations were sanctioned by warrants, when everybody is already moving on and questioning how they were served, and crying foul of summary executions,” he elaborated.
Casilao reiterated his call for the disclosure of the names of the perpetrators. Witnesses accounted that they were using face masks, covered name plates and even eye shades.
“If Albayalde firmly believes in the innocence of his subordinates, we dare him to publicize their ‘gallantry,’ put medals on them if he wishes, so as the bereaved families could pursue as much as the rule of law offers, the very principle or ideal, the police chief has infringed on,” he ended. ###