NUPL Cebu condemns spate of attacks and killings of Cebuano lawyers
CEBU CITY, Philippines — A group of lawyers has expressed concern over the spate of attacks and killings of their colleagues in Cebu.
The National Union of People’s Lawyers (NULP) Cebu expressed condemnation in “strongest terms” the series of attacks and killings of lawyers in the country, particularly the recent ambush of Lawyer Baby Maria Concepcion Landero-Ole by unidentified riding-in-tandem suspects yesterday, December 17, 2020, in Danao City, Cebu.
“The lady lawyer had also served as counsel for former political detainee Eduardo Sacamay, whose charges before the courts were eventually dismissed. Atty. Landero-Ole is among tens of lawyers whose meaningful lives as advocates of justice were cut short by ruthless perpetrators, adding to over 50 members of the legal profession who were killed under the Duterte administration,” said NUPL Cebu.
The group also believes that linking the shooting of Ole to the convicted drug cases of her deceased husband, who was also killed in May 2020, was unwarranted, uncalled for, and only served to besmirch the late lawyer’s reputation.
The group said that the recent deaths and attacks were brought by extrajudicial justice and “disregarding the well-enshrined principles of due process and rule of law.”
“Without a clear direction in preventing the killings of lawyers and resolving pending cases from the sitting administration, it will only continue to perpetuate the culture of impunity and injustice. We demand justice and accountability!” the group said.
NUPL Cebu is demanding that the investigation be thorough and justice be swift for the death of Ole in the gruesome daylight shooting, and the group hopes that the law investigators will not be quick to tag the case as simply illegal-drug related.
“We call on the State to comply with its basic obligation to afford protection against threats to the right to life, including the members of the legal profession, and to ensure that lawyers can perform their duties without fear, intimidation, or harassment,” they added. /rcg
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