A year after Kian delos Santos’ death, injustice and terror prevails under Duterte’s criminal lordship

One year on after the gruesome killing of Kian delos Santos, son of an OFW, the onslaught of bloodshed under Duterte’s psychopathic drug war continues to claim more lives, ravaging one poor community to another. Just ten days ago, Allan Rafael, a former OFW battling cancer was robbed, tortured and slaughtered at the hands of police officers manning Barbosa police station.

Remorseless, Duterte showered favours to his agents of impunity. Among them is former Caloocan Chief Chito Bersaluna, now head of the entire Bulacan PNP. Bersaluna was back in the spotlight after the violent assault on striking NutriAsia workers and the illegal arrests of activists and media personnel. In parallel, Duterte appointed Caloocan Regional Trial Court judge Georgina Dumpit as Sandiganbayan associate justice after her dismissal of the murder cases against Caloocan cops involved in the slaying of teenagers Carl Arnaiz and Reynaldo “Kulot” De Guzman.

Duterte at the helm turned the Philippines into a vast furnace of suffering and torment for the majority of struggling Filipinos. Now it can be told that Duterte is the current supreme drug lord in the land, serving as chief protector of big drug criminals and smugglers like his kumpadre Peter Lim and his very own son Pulong Duterte. Under his fake war on drugs which targets the poor, the death toll has now exceeded 20,000 while the regime feigns blindness as tons and tons of illegal drugs worth billions are shipped into the country. The stench of death reeks enormously while a sea of innocent blood cries out to the heavens.

In the same manner, human rights’ defenders are beset with abductions, killings and fabricated charges. Among the latest victims was Butch Rosales, a Cebu-based Rise Up volunteer gunned down while on board a passenger jeepney.

Consolidating an even more vicious Fascist clique, Arroyo’s rise back to power and the alignment of the Marcoses in Sara Duterte’s Hugpong ushered the revival of the arrest orders against the Makabayan4 which were quashed just recently for insufficient evidence. On the night of August 11, Rowena and Oliver Rosales were arrested in Balagtas, Bulacan on trumped-up charges of illegal possession of firearms and explosives. The couple were former officers of the Confederation for Unity, Recognition and Advancement of Government Employees (COURAGE).

The range of Duterte’s tyrannical folly knows no geographical bounds. Lately, the Bureau of Immigration (BI) in collusion with the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) issued a blacklist order against Migrante’s Cordillera coordinator Caridad “Caring” Bachiller and 27 other rights activists who are mostly foreign nationals. Disregarding humanitarian considerations, immigration officers in the airport expelled 84 year-old Australian professor and human rights lawyer Gill Boehringer.

Migrante International reiterates its condemnation of all these Fascist attacks against the urban poor, OFW families and human rights defenders. We will exact justice for Kian and Allan Rafael as well as for the tens of thousands of victims of Duterte’s atrocious three-pronged war. Let it be known that history has never shown clemency to despotic tyrants. In due time, the emergent Duterte-Arroyo-Marcos fascist clique will face the full brunt of the people’s collective indignation.

Though faced with persecution, Migrante along with the rest of freedom-loving Filipinos will remain steadfast and defiant against repression and oppression. As long as the US-Duterte regime generates terror and impunity, we Filipinos will stand for justice and assert our democratic rights.

Stop the killings! Justice now!

Defend human rights defenders! Resist Crackdown!

Fight tyranny!