The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) has started its own investigation on the killing of Reginald Michael Manito, a lawyer who is candidate for councilor in Sto. Tomas City in Batangas.
Police reports revealed that Manito was shot dead by two suspects who barged into his office last Feb. 17.
“CHR strongly denounces this latest killing of another member of the legal profession,” CHR Spokesperson Jacqueline Ann de Guia, also a lawyer, said in a statement.
“There have been numerous attacks against lawyers in recent years, which contribute to a hostile and fearful environment for those working to pursue justice,” De Gua said.
While it is conducting its own investigation through its Region IV-A office, De Guia said that the CHR is also calling on local authorities in Batangas to exert all efforts to ensure that the suspects will be held into account for the killing of Manito.
“Further violence can be deterred by exacting justice on each case that violates the utmost right to life,” she stressed.
“We also harp our repeated plea to the government to ensure greater protection of lawyers and all agents of law to enable them to do their duty without fear of retaliation. Similarly, tighter security measures must be implemented during this fragile period of election season,” she added.