Sep. 25, 2018 MART D. SAMBALUD
DAVAO CITY, Philippines — A volunteer for a human rights group Kawagib Moro Human Rights based in Maguindanao was shot and killed by suspected military agents at around 3:00 p.m of September 23, a spokesperson of the group said.
Cosain Naga Jr., speaking for Kawagib Moro Human Rights, identified the victim as 43-year-old Mariam Uy Acob who was shot by two unidentified gunmen onboard a single motorcycle.
Naga said Acob was riding an improvised single motorcycle with a side car while on her way home from Mamasapano town. But when Acob reached the Barangay Tukanalipao, her assailants overtook her vehicle.
“They shot her seven times,” Naga said, which resulted to Acob’s instant death. Acob’s body sustained multiple gunshot wounds in different parts of her body.
Kawagib said that Acob had received death threats weeks prior to her planned assassination, while she was doing her work as a paralegal volunteer in various conflict-ridden communities in Mindanao.
Apart from her human rights work, Acob, a resident of Barangay Dapiawan, Datu Saudi Ampatuan town ,Maguindanao, was a leader of Tindeg Bangsamoro.
Tindeg Bangsamoro is an organization of “bakwits” in Maguindanao that opposed the continuing alleged militarization of Moro communities in the province.
According to Kawagib, Acob started working as a Moro human rights workers back in 2015 and actively joined in several protest actions in Datu Saudi Ampatuan town, Cotabato City, and General Santos City to publicly oppose militarization in various communities.
“She consistently denounced military airstrikes and the military encampment in their community, notably the 40th Infantry Battalion of the Armed Forces of the Philippines under the 6th Infantry Division,” the group said.
The militant Suara Bangsamoro condemned the killing, noting “the attack against Acob is a concerted effort by the government to gag its critics.”