Gabriela Women’s Party Representative Luz Ilagan denounced today the killing of Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas Southern Mindanao Region (KMP-SMR) spokesperson, and Bayan -SMR vice chairperson Celso Pojas.
Pojas was killed on May 15,2007 at around 6:00 am, right outside the gate of the Farmers Association of, of which Pojas was secretary general.
“This recent incident belies all claims of the Arroyo administration that human rights violations and extrajudicial killings have been put to a stop. Clearly, the attacks against militants and activists continue, claiming Celso Pojas as its latest victim.”
Prior to his death, Pojas had been receiving numerous death threats. He had been actively campaigning for the immediate pull out of military troops in Compostela valley Province and stood in behalf for peasant and lumad victims of militarization in Baganga and Cateel in Davao Oriental. The day he died, Pojas had been planning to visit the lumad families camped in the Compostela gym, following their evacuation due to militarization in their communities.
“We strongly condemn the killing of Celso Pojas and we demand justice for Celso and for all victims of extra judicial killings under the Arroyo regime. Activists and human rights defenders will always be targets under a government that refuses to recognize and address legitimate calls for land and social justice.”#