Farmers to CHR: Probe peasant killings and rights violations in Negros

Tanggol Magsasaka seeks the assistance of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) in probing the latest killing of a farmer in Negros Occidental. Farmer Crispin Tingal Jr. was allegedly killed by the 94th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army in an encounter last May 3 in Himamaylan town. However, Tingal’s family denied the AFP’s claim and asserted that the victim was a civilian and not a member of the New People’s Army.

“We are asking the CHR to extend help to the bereaved family of farmer Crispin Tingal and provide them with due assistance,” according to peasant rights watchdog Tanggol Magsasaka.

According to Negros-based human rights group September 21 Movement, on May 3, Tingal was tied up, beaten, and shot dead. One of Tingal’s sons was reportedly chased and shot at but managed to escape. The said incident happened after Tingal attended a seminar on fish production organized by the Kabankalan City Agriculture Office.

After gunshots were heard in the community, Tingal’s wife and children went to an evacuation site in Sitio Paloypoy, Brgy. Hilamonan, where an estimated 38 other families took refuge. Related to the incident, around 65 families evacuated their homes in Sitio Ulo-Tuburan in Barangay Buenavista in Himamaylan on Wednesday due to constant armed clashes. Tingal’s family learned about his demise when the 94th IBPA labeled the farmer as an NPA casualty in the alleged encounter.

Relatives of the victim appealed on social media for support as the 36-year-old farmer left behind 7 young children. Tingal was a member of the United Church of Christ in the Philippines (UCCP) and was also active in sustainable livelihood programs spearheaded by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).  

Tingal’s killing is the latest incident in the spate of human rights violations committed by the 94th IBPA in Southern Negros. According to September 21 Movement, the military batallion was responsible for the abduction of peasant organizer Leonardo Sermona, and harassment against farmers and sugar workers in various villages in Binalbagan and Himamaylan cities.

Farmer Jose Gonzales, who was declared missing on January 8 this year, was killed by the 94th IBPA in a fake encounter in Sitio MalikolLiko, Barangay Carabalan, Himamaylan on January 9. In 2022, Defend Negros has documented seven farmers killed. “Negros island remains as a laboratory of state fascism especially with Memo Order No. 32 still enforced across Negros, Bicol and Samar.” #

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s