Philippine Daily Inquirer

78-yr-old farmer leader gunned down near Army camp in N. Ecija

- By Armand Galang and Tonette Orejas

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.

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WHATWENT BEFORE

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