The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) has condemned the recent string of killings in the country.
The CHR noted the assassination of a lawyer in Bukidnon and a barangay captain in Davao Occidental; the shooting of a police officer in Cabuyao City, Laguna and three soldiers and one civilian in Lanao del Norte; and the killing of two newly freed prisoners in Quiapo, Manila.
The victims were killed in broad daylight by still unidentified assailants.
CHR spokesperson Atty Jacqueline Ann de Guia said in a statement that arbitrary deprivations of life constitute serious human rights violations and that the failure of the government to prevent loss of life and hold perpetrators accountable is a threat to a functioning rule of law.
“The State is obligated to investigate every situation involving a violation of the rights protected in our Constitution, most importantly the right to life. Likewise, it must not allow private persons or groups to act freely and with impunity to the detriment of the rights of any person,” she said.
De Guia added that these brazen killings are a result of violence and impunity being normalized in society and being tolerated by the government. She lamented public officials even encourage and embolden citizens to put justice into their own hands and deprive their fellow citizens of basic human rights.
Instead of helping maintain peace and order, De Guia said these remarks only foster a community of violence and fear.
The CHR regional offices will launch independent probes on the cases in order to give justice to the victims and their families.
“We look forward to the cooperation of the proper authorities in the course of our investigations in pursuit of exacting justice and accountability for such transgressions,” said De Guia.