The violence of the victims of the Sagay massacre: We do not know a late lawyer
Gilbert Bayoran (Philippine Star) – November 11, 2018 – 12:00
BACOLOD CITY, Philippines – Relatives of agricultural workers killed in Sagay, Negros Occidental, reported last month that their lawyer Benjamin Ramos, a lawyer for human rights, was injured.
"Hindu nami siya kilala (We do not know him)," said Nova Bantigue, the niece of one of the victims.
Joemarie Cañete, whose wife died in the massacre, said that none of their family members met Ramos.
Prior to the murder, Ramos was reported to assist relatives of the victims of the massacre.
Relatives of fatalities were presented at a press conference on Friday to refuse such reports.
Chief Inspector Robert Mansueto, Police Director Sagay, said that the families of eight out of nine victims sought police protection.
Militant groups have accused the state security forces of participating in the killing of Ramos, the founding member of the National Union of Popular Lawyers.
President Duterte has been accused of not killing lawyers, although he repeated his call to the police to stop land grabbing.
Chief Inspector John Bulalacao, Western Visayas Police Director, said Ramos provided legal aid to farmers who were accused of land acquisition, which "angered landlords and legitimate landowners".
What is illegal gambling?
In the meantime, widow Ramosa expressed disappointment over the claims of the Philippine National Police that illegal gambling is one of the possible motives for his murder.
Clarissa Ramos, in an interview with MBC Aksyon Radyo, said her husband had been under surveillance for a number of years to handle cases of tired activists.
Last year, Clarissa said her husband was included in the military list of communist rebels.
Michael de la Concepcion from Bayan-Negros said that the police should investigate the 303th Infantry Brigade to launch a campaign against Ramos, citing a poster in which a lawyer was designated as a communist rebel.