In this file photo, the government peace panel holds an informal meeting with the National Democratic Front of the Philippines in Oslo, Norway. Malayao had attended peace talks as a consultant and spokesman for the NDFP, alternative media site Kodao Productions said.
Jesus Dureza, Facebook, file

NDFP peace consultant shot in bus in Nueva Vizcaya
(Philstar.com) - January 30, 2019 - 9:20am

MANILA, Philippines (Updated 10:28 a.m.) — A peace consultant of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines was killed while he was sleeping in a bus in Aritao, Nueva Vizcaya early Wednesday morning.

Randy Felix Malayao, an NDFP peace consultant and columnist for Baguio City-based Northern Dispatch, was killed at a bus stop when a gunman climbed aboard the Isabela-bound bus and shot him while he was sleeping, alternative media site Kodao Productions reported early Wednesday.

Kodao said Malayao's death was disclosed by a source close to Malayao's family.

According to a GMA News Online report citing information from Senior Superintendent Jeremias Aglugub, Nueva Vizcaya provincial police director, there were two perpetrators in the attack. They left the scene on a black Yamaha Mio motorcycle.

Malayao, who was not facing any criminal charges and was covered by the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees, had attended negotiations before the peace talks were scrapped in 2017.  

"He also acted as one of the spokespersons of the NDFP Negotiating Panel in Europe. Abroad and in the Philippines, Malayao represented the NDFP in peace forums, along with Government of the Republic of the Philippines negotiators such as (Labor) Secretary Silvestre Bello III, Atty. Angela Librado Trinidad and others," the Kodao report reads.

The NDFP negotiates for the Communist Party of the Philippines and New People's Army. It is not included in the government petition to declare the CPP and NPA as terrorist groups.

Malayao was a political prisoner during the Arroyo administration and, Kodao said, had been "heavily tortured" while in captivity. He was held for four years before being acquitted and released. Labor Secretary Bello had been one of his lawyers in one of the cases against him.

Malayao was a student leader at the University of the Philippines in the Visayas-Miag-Ao in the early 1990s and was editor-in-chief of official student publication "Ang Mangingisda". He was a member of the UP Beta Sigma Fraternity.

Call for justice

In a statement, Fidel Agcaoili, chairman of the NDFP peace panel, said the group is outraged by the killing of Malayao, whom he called "an indefatigable worker in the service of the people."

Rights group Karapatan said it grieves with Malayao's family, friends and colleagues and called for justice for his death and for other victims of extrajudicial killings.

Although the government defines extrajudicial killings as those done by state and non-state agencies against members of cause-oriented groups or against journalists, the Commission on Human Rights has said the term includes "killings by any other groups or individuals which the government fails to investigate, prosecute, and punish when it is in a position to do so."

Karapatan added:"We ascribe Malayao's killing, as with the deaths of Fr. Marcelito Paez, Elisa Badayos and Eleuterio Moises, and Attorney Benjamin Ramos and thousands others in the counterinsurgency program and the sham drug war, to the death squads of the Duterte regime."

The rights group said Duterte administration has "ceaselessly incited and ordered the killing of peace and human rights advocates, peasants and indigenous peoples, the urban poor, church people and many others." 

Earlier this month, teachers' union Alliance of Concerned Teachers cried foul over a police inventory of its members, saying this was a violation of the rights to privacy and to organize. . — Jonathan de Santos

NATIONAL DEMOCRATIC FRONT OF THE PHILIPPINES NUEVA VIZCAYA
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