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Climate of Impunity Lingers on

I was shocked early this morning by a call and a text message that our friend and collegue Bayan Muna Coordinator Fernando Baldomero was gunned down at 6:30 this morning. He was about to ride his motorcycle to bring his kid to school when two men on motorcycle wearing helmet and black jacket gunned him down. He was hit at the head twice leaving him dead in front of his house at Barangay Estancia, Kalibo, Aklan. The perpetrators were not yet identified by the police.

Baldomero was the 6th victim of extra judicial killing in a period of one month when Gloria Macapagal Arroyo finished her term last June 30 and the first political activist killed after President Noynoy Aquino officially took his presidential term five days ago. Two days ago, Jose Daguio, a 75 year old radio reporter and a journalist of the local paper in Tabuk City, a province in northern Philippines was also shot dead in front of his house. Daguio was the third journalist killed in less than a month.

Ernan Baldomero, a journalist of the local paper and the son of Fernando Baldomero said his father doesn’t have any personal conflicts or enemies in his community. In fact, people come to him for help anytime of the day. The only enemy he got was the military for being a leader of a progressive political party Bayan Muna (People First), lamented Ernan.

Baldomero was an elected town official for six years and he also won for another 3 year term last May 10 election. Last April 19 at the height of electoral campaign, two grenades were blasted to their ancestral house. The house was damaged and fortunately nobody was hurt. Despite the negative campaign against him by the military he still won during the election.

Bagong Alyansang Makabayan ( New People’s Alliance) , a nation wide umbrella of militant organizations condemned such killing and called a nationwide condemnation actions bringing the issue to President Aquino in putting a stop to endless and wanton political killings in the country.

The Filipino people get rid of former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo last June 30. As she ends her presidential term everybody was jubilant including the international community. Macapagal-Arroyo left thousands of bleeding heart Filipinos with her legacy on political killings of activists and journalists. But her legacy of human rights violations and the climate of impunity did not end when her end term last in June 30, it’s still continuing today.

I couldn’t hold our new President Aquino accountable for this today, which I’m sure mostly will agree with me. But I’m hoping that the Filipino people and the victims of human rights violation will be given justice by the Aquino administration including our friend and colleague Fernando Baldomero. President Aquino must immediately take the full force of the law to prosecute Gloria Macapagal – Arroyo and all the perpetrators of human rights violations or else the climate of impunity will linger on.

I am also calling all Filipinos to keep vigilant despite the promises of a brighter future of the new administration. We must not be complacent after Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. The system and the machineries that murdered thousands of Filipino people who cries for peace and justice are still intact. It is our vigilance that must remind the new government all the times not to forget his promises of peace, justice and development. Let the life and death of Fernando Baldomero and all the martyrs an inspiration for us to keep on threading the winding path to justice.

Comments

JaniceW's picture

Thank you

I am glad to hear that you are safe and await to see if the Aquino government is not just a symbolic beacon of hope but a change in the corrupt system of justice. The high rate of impunity in media killings must be broken and the trend reversed. The Philippines is now ranked third on the Committee to Protect Journalist's 2010 Impunity list of countries that consistently fail to address journalist killings.

CPJ has also sent a letter to Aquino on June 9, calling upon him to seek justice in the murders of the Philippine journalists.

We must remember that this plague of impunity, where journalists are killed regularly and governments fail to solve the crimes, also has a broader effect on society as a whole, effectively cutting off the flow of news and information, or forcing journalists to flee into exile in fear. Thank you for keeping us informed of the situation and let's hope Aquino's electoral mandate to commit to end the culture of impunity is fulfilled.

Best wishes,
Janice

malayapinas's picture

My life continue

Hi Janice ! Such a long time for me to be here one again. Yap, please do read my second article I posted. I just feel so tired and lazy after the election. It was such a very tiresome journey. This is not the first time I felt this way - but I think this is the worst.

I'm sorry I wasn't answering your emails - got locked up with my post electoral depression /fatigue. But thank you for answering first my article . I really tried hard to come up with one and surprisingly I came up with two articles. I supposed I'm so emotionally intense today that made me write all what I feel. Tragedy wake us up in the middle of our sleep.

I have doubts with the Aquino administration but I'm not yet giving up all the chances for him. But I'm still l hopeful that the Filipino people will continue to struggle for better lives even when President Aquino will fail to deliver his promises. Journalist will still continue to speak out even when death is confronting them.

Thank you for your support and inspiration. I will write you in your email!

love,
Malaya

olutosin's picture

We are with you!

I have posted a comment but I do not know what it happening. We are with you in spirit sis, we feel so sad about the killings of journalist and even other citizens too, we know it will not continue like this because whatever has a beginning will surely come to an end one day......We have seen the end of some horrible reigns and people so also we will see the end of these ones too. May the souls of these fighters rest in peace.

Olutosin Oladosu Adebowale
Founder/Project Coordinator
Star of Hope Transformation Centre
512 Road
F Close
Festac Town
Lagos-Nigeria

https:

malayapinas's picture

Back to Life

Hi my sis!

I'm strugggling to be back here with all of you and thankfully I just did it today. So many exciting events just came by here in our VOF communiy and I just allowed it to pass by without a word of one or two. I feel sad but life has to be this way sometimes even we don't want it to be.

Thank you for posting and keeping my spirit high. How are you? I wish you are in good health and happy with your life. I really missed all of you and I hope I could still catch up with everybody.

love,
Malaya

olutosin's picture

WELL

We are well Dear friend, and may you be well and safe, you are always on my mind.
Love you soul sister

Olutosin Oladosu Adebowale
Founder/Project Coordinator
Star of Hope Transformation Centre
512 Road
F Close
Festac Town
Lagos-Nigeria

https:

Carri Pence's picture

Thanks so much for being a

Thanks so much for being a brave and bold voice on behalf of the Philippines. I love this community, PulseWire, because of people like you. I feel you voice has so much influence on our readers because they don't get news like this from anywhere else. Thus, your updates don't go unnoticed and benefits us all.

In compassion,
Carri Pence

malayapinas's picture

Dear Carrie, I'm so glad to

Dear Carrie,

I'm so glad to have you here in our inspiring community. You're giving more inspiration to me and to each and everyone of us . It's hard to be brave but it's the only option we've got to stop this nonsense killings of activists here in my country. But above all these hardship and pain, I'm always inspired whenever I post an article here at PulseWire and got very inspiring comments such as yours! Thank you so much!

love,
Malaya

Carri Pence's picture

I hope you continue to post

I hope you continue to post new entries on your trials of making a safer environment for us all the enjoy. Thanks for being the respect of our past, the strength of our present, and the hope of our future.

jadefrank's picture

Remembering Bayan

Dearest Malaya,

It's a relief to hear your voice, as we can't help but worry for your safety. Thank you for reporting on the recent violence in the Philippines - as Carri mentioned, we look to you for the voice of truth in this region of the world.

I am so sorry to hear about your friend Bayan and I send my condolences to his family. I know that you have lost many friends in the struggle for justice, and it must be horrific to wake up to hear the news of a friend and colleague murdered.

I try to imagine this world - this reality - and I feel that perhaps I would lack the strength and determination that you possess to pick up, move forward and continue this fight for justice. But as I read through your story today, my feelings of fear and of self-doubt began to subside as your words moved from reporting this terrible news, to urging your nation to keep vigilant and not let the abuses of a past leader to derail your movement for peace and justice. And this is what makes you a leader Malaya - your ability to transform tragedy into a memorial for action.

In friendship and solidarity,
Jade

malayapinas's picture

In my heart

Dear Jade,

Thank you for your very touching post for me! I just realized that I have so many friends already that were gone and it made me cry. It's sad , really sad . Though, I just can't imagine how did I cope with all these tragedies.

We have to move on whether we like it or not . It's hurting and I long for the day when our country will be free and justice will reign. A day when we can laugh and enjoy life to the fullest. A day when we will not cry and mourn for a friend or colleague who was assassinated due to his/her political beliefs.

Thank you so much for your solidarity with us! I always keep your words in my heart,

love,
Malaya

malayapinas's picture

In my heart

Dear Jade,

Thank you for your very touching post for me! I just realized that I have so many friends already that were gone and it made me cry. It's sad , really sad . Though, I just can't imagine how did I cope with all these tragedies.

We have to move on whether we like it or not . It's hurting and I long for the day when our country will be free and justice will reign. A day when we can laugh and enjoy life to the fullest. A day when we will not cry and mourn for a friend or colleague who was assassinated due to his/her political beliefs.

Thank you so much for your solidarity with us! I always keep your words in my heart,

love,
Malaya

Nusrat Ara's picture

It's so sad. I hope and pray

It's so sad. I hope and pray things get better with the new government. We have to keep doing our work .

Love

Nusrat

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