Playwright receives death threat

Elizabeth Marcelo, Emmanuel Tupas - The Philippine Star
Playwright receives death threat
Playwright, screenwriter and filmmaker Bonifacio Ilagan, a staunch critic of the Marcoses, speaks in a virtual news conference.
News5 / Greg Gregorio

MANILA, Philippines — A group of martial law victims has expressed alarm over the death threat allegedly received by veteran activist and playwright Bonifacio Ilagan.

“This is clearly meant to harass Ilagan and activists like him into silence and inaction. But it is a threat we do not take lightly due to the fact that hundreds of activists have been murdered in the past,” the Movement Against Tyranny (MAT) said in a statement yesterday.

MAT said Ilagan received a call on his mobile phone on Monday from a male caller with cell phone number 09655976472.

The caller supposedly introduced himself as a commander of some sort, claiming that his unit was tasked to wipe out communists.

The group said the caller also told Ilagan to desist from his activities.

The caller supposedly said that he “knew enough” of Ilagan and “still respects” him, but his unit was just waiting for “the final order from the higher-ups” to get the renowned playwright and activist.

Before hanging up, the caller told Ilagan that he “should not ask for mercy, [as] it would be futile.”

Ilagan said that in all his years as an activist, this was the first time that he received such a threat.

“We call on the authorities to conduct a probe and counteract the threat on Ilagan,” MAT said.

The group appealed to the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine National Police and other government security forces to ensure that no order to kill Ilagan will be issued to any of its units.

“We challenge the Marcos administration to end extrajudicial killings,” MAT said.

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