Philippine Daily Inquirer
78-yr-old farmer leader gunned down near Army camp in N. Ecija
Guevarra’s wife, Lolita, said she could not think of any reason for her husband to die this way.
“He died a very violent death,” said Lolita, 76. “He did not abuse anyone. He devoted his whole life helping the poor.”
Guevarra’s group, Almana 3100, was formed to stop the Philippine Army from removing farmers from 3,100 hectares of land inside what used to be an Army reservation covering several villages, including Barangay San Isidro where the Guevarras live.
The lands were originally intended for victims of Mt. Pinatubo eruption in 1991, based on a proclamation issued by former President Corazon Aquino.
But since no Mt. Pinatubo victims decided to settle there, Guevarra’s group claimed that the proclamation allowed them to actually occupy or cultivate the land, suppos- edly as secondary beneficiaries.
Evaristo said investigators were looking at land dispute as a possible motive in the murder.
Joseph Canlas, chair of the Alyansa ng Magbubukid sa Gitnang Luzon, said Guevarra was among farmer leaders in the region who pushed for the distribution of lands through the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program.