By Joey Natividad
CITY OF NAGA, Bicol Region – Election violence took another human life when a farmer in Masbate who was a local leader for Senatorial aspirant Neri Colmenares was gunned down by unknown gunmen while the victim, together with family and friends, had been celebrating his son’s birthday.
The group, Neri Colmenares for Senator Movement-Bicol, deplored the killing of local campaign leader, Ruben B. Corot, 54,in Barangay T. R. Yangco, Dimasalang, Masbate on Tuesday morning, April 16.
According to Tess Pielago, spokesperson for the Colmenares group in the Bicol Region, the slain leader Corot was a leader of a farmers group, Dimasalang Farmers Association and Matutubi-Anas Farmers Association.
As peasant leader, Corot had been opposed to the province’s eco-tourism projects which are more inclined for dislocation of marginal farmers and fishermen.
“By Ruben’s death, violence marked by EJKs (extra-judicial killings) and (HRVs) human rights violations in this election period are on the rise. Elections are still dominated by brutality, cheating,and violence, and dictation by ruling elite groups,” Pielago said.
“Ruben was one of the countless peasants who have long wanted for meaningful change in the country, free from State abuses, free from neo-liberal economic policies, and fighting for a government system that will serve the interests of the people,” the Colmenares spokesperson said.
“The killing of Ruben will not prevent the progressive movement from advancing forward and will inspire others to fight for genuine justice, lasting peace, and real development,” Pielago said. [BicolToday.com]