The online news portal of TV5
MANILA, Philippines -- Farmers and other activists staged a “justice caravan” on Saturday to accompany the remains of slain Dutch development worker Willem Geertman from Angeles City, Pampanga to Baler, capital town of Aurora province, where he will be buried on Sunday.
Geertman, executive director of the nongovernmental Alay Bayan Luson Inc. was shot dead by two gunmen outside his office in San Fernando on Tuesday.
Police officially described Geertman’s death as the offshoot of a robbery but activist and human rights groups believe he was killed by state security forces.
Earlier, the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan said Geertman had been openly tagged a member of the communist revolutionary movement by the military since he began working among marginalized communities in Aurora in the 1980s.
Joseph Canlas, chairman of the Alyansa ng mga Magbubukid sa Gitnang Luson and trustee of Alay Bayan Luson, said in a statement that their quest for justice for Geertman would not end with his burial.
“His death would haunt the Aquino presidency until he is pushed to do something,” Canlas vowed.
Other groups that joined the justice caravan included the Alyansa ng Manggagawang Bukid sa Asyenda Luisita, Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas-Pangasinan and Anakpawis Party-list-Gitnang Luson.
The caravan stopped briefly at Angeles City’s Plaza Miranda for an indignation rally than passed through San Fernando, Concepcion town in Tarlac, Cabanatuan City in Nueva Ecija, and reached Baler, where it was welcomed by members of the Panlalawigang Alyansa ng Magbubukid ng Aurora (Pamana), which Geertman helped organize.