Republic of the Philippines
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES TWELFTH CONGRESS Third Regular Session
HOUSE RESOLUTION No. 1448 _____________________________________________________________________________________ Introduced by Reps. SATUR C. OCAMPO, JOEL G. VIRADOR and SIEGFRED D. DEDURO _____________________________________________________________________________________ RESOLUTION CONDEMN I NG THE COLD- BLOODED KILL I NG OF ROMEO MALABANAN, BAYAN MUNA SECRETARY- GENERAL OF BAY, LAGUNA WHO WAS SHOT IN THE FACE RIGHT IN FRONT OF HIS HOUSE IN BARANGAY PUYPUY, BAY, LAGUNA LAST DECEMBER 23, 2003 BY AN ARMED ASSAILANT ALLEGEDLY WORKING FOR BAY DETACH ME NT COMMANDER LT. ROBERTO BREBONERIA AND A CERTAIN COL. ESPINEL I OF THE PHIL I P P I N E ARMY, FOLLOWING MALABANAN’S ACTIVE INVOLVE ME N T IN PETIT I ON I NG FOR THE WITHDRAWAL OF A MIL I TARY DETACHMEN T IN THEIR AREA, BRINGI NG TO 34 THE NUMBER OF BAYAN MUNA MEMBERS KILLED SINCE APRIL 2001 W HEREAS according to the human rights group KARAPATAN, at around 9:00 a.m. last December 23, 2003, Romeo Malabanan, 42, secretary-general of the Bayan Muna chapter in Bay, Laguna, was shot at extremely close range in front of his house in Barangay Puypuy in the same area; W HEREAS Malabanan was shot in the face by an unidentified male assailant using a 45-caliber gun. The single bullet which felled him entered his left upper lip and exited through the right side of his neck; W HEREAS in the early morning of December 23, Malabanan, who also worked as a technical assistant for Bay Mayor Edwin Ramos, was waiting in front of his house for a ride to the town hall. His youngest son and another relative were sitting nearby. A lone gunman in civilian clothes, wearing a hat and jacket, casually walked towards Malabanan. The gunman then uttered cuss words at Malabanan, prompting the latter to look at the assailant. The gunman then instantly fired a single shot at Malabanan's face; W HEREAS according to eyewitness accounts, the assailant was about to fire more shots as Malabanan fell to the ground. Malabanan's youngest son, however, immediately flung his body over his father. The gunman aimed his gun at Malabanan's son and then walked away; W HEREAS a police car with three armed policemen happened to be in the vicinity at the time of the incident. The police car stopped about 25 meters away from the gunman. Two of the policemen alighted the car, one of whom fired a shot at the gunman who was casually walking away. The policemen did not pursue the gunman. When Malabanan''s family later on inquired why they did not pursue the assailant, the policemen reportedly replied that their guns were jammed; W HEREAS according to witnesses, the gunman only started to run when he turned a corner approximately 20 meters from Malabanan's house. Two others males on board a motorcycle served as back-up. The assailant is alleged to be working for Bay detachment commander Lt. Roberto Breboneria and a certain Col. Espineli of the Philippine Army; W HEREAS last November 2003, a municipal resolution calling for the removal of a military detachment under Breboneria's command in nearby Barangay Tranka, Bay town was unanimously approved by the Municipal Council. Malabanan was among those who actively worked for the filing and approval of the resolution. Apart from his active involvement in Bayan Muna, townsfolk and colleagues believe that
Malabanan's role in the said resolution directly placed him at odds with the military which wanted him silenced; W HEREAS Malabanan was chairperson of the local peasant organization Pagkakaisa ng Ugnayan ng mga Magbubukid sa Laguna (PUMALAG-Laguna) from 1998-2000. In 2000, he suffered a stroke which rendered him partially paralyzed. He was able to recover the use of his legs but until the time of his death, his right hand was partially paralyzed. Despite his weak physical condition, Malabanan undertook organizing work for Bayan Muna. He is also reported to have played a key role in the victory of Bay town Mayor Edwin Ramos, who is himself vice-chairperson of Bayan Muna-Laguna. Since 2001, Malabanan has been an active organizer of Bayan Muna and coordinator of its projects in Laguna; W HEREAS Romeo Malabanan is the 34th member of Bayan Muna killed in the course of undertaking legitimate organizing work for that national political party; W HEREAS the continued and relentless attacks against Bayan Muna and its members and coordinators are widely believed to be part of a systematic campaign to frustrate its bid at replicating its 2001 victory as party-list topnotcher in the 2004 May elections. The sheer brutality in the pattern of the killings reveal the sheer intolerance for legal political organizations espousing people's issues; NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the House of Representatives hereby condemns the cold-blooded killing of Romy Malabanan, Bayan Muna secretary-general of Bay, Laguna who was shot in the face right in front of his house in Barangay Puypuy, Bay, Laguna last December 23, 2003 by an armed assailant allegedly working for Bay detachment commander Lt. Roberto Breboneria and a certain Col. Espineli of the Philippine Army, following Malabanan’s active involvement in petitioning for the withdrawal of a military detachment in their area, bringing to 34 the number of Bayan Muna members killed since April 2001. Adopted,
SATUR C. OCAMPO SIEGFRED D. DEDURO Bayan Muna–Party-List Bayan Muna–Party-List
JOEL G. VIRADOR Bayan Muna–Party-List
W HEREAS according to witnesses, the gunman only started to run when he turned a corner approximately 20 meters from Malabanan's house. Two...