The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) has decided to conduct its own investigation into the killing of lawyer Rex Jesus Mario Fernandez who was ambushed in broad daylight in Cebu City last Aug. 26.
In a statement, CHR Spokesperson Jacqueline Ann de Guia said the commission “decries the brazen assault against a person’s right to life” as she pointed out that “no reason can ever justify any act that will arbitrarily deprive a person of his life.”
“We have also seen numerous assaults against lawyers. It is tragic that those too in the legal profession have fallen victims to injustices and human rights violations that they have sworn to fight,” De Guia said.
The CHR reminded the government of its obligations to uphold and protect the rights of every Filipino.
“We urge the government to swiftly act and investigate this case and hold the perpetrators to account. Justice must prevail,” De Guia stressed.
Fernandez was ambushed onboard his vehicle by a still unidentified motorcycle-riding gunman in Cebu City.
Reports stated that Fernandez died on the spot while his driver was wounded after the assailants peppered the lawyer’s car with bullets.
Fernandez became controversial for staging a hunger strike against the management of the condominium he was staying in.
The slain lawyer had been on hunger strike since Aug.13, 2021 after the management of the condominium cut off his water supply despite an injunction issued by a local court.
The National Union of Peoples’ Lawyer had said that Fernandez was active in human rights cases in Cebu. (With a report from Juan Carlo de Vela)