FORWARDED APPEAL (Philippines): A female human rights activist stabbed to death in Bislig City, Mindanao 

Dear friends,

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) is forwarding an appeal from the  KARAPATAN (Alliance for the Advancement of People’s Rights), a human rights organization in Manila, Philippines, regarding the killing of another labor activist.
Mrs. Victoria Samonte (51), the regional vice-chair of the KMU-CARAGA which is the leading labor alliance in the Philippines, was stabbed to death by an unidentified man in Bislig City, Mindanao on 30 September 2005.

Samonte is the latest victim of the recent unrestrained killings of human rights activists in the Philippines. Nine days before Samonte’s killing, a labor rights activist Diosdado Fortuna (50) was slain on September 22 (For details, see our previous appeal FA-27-2005). Please also see the AHRC’s previous appeals regarding the killing of labor activists; Ernesto Bang and Joel Reyes (UP-75-2005), Fr. William Tadena (UP-26-2005) and Abelardo Ladera (UA-34-2005). All these incidents took place in Luzon.

We call for your strong intervention in this matter. Please write letters to the Philippine government demanding that an independent and immediate investigation are conducted into Samonte’s case and the that responsible are arrested and prosecuted. Samonte’s family should be compensated.

Please also urge the Philippine government to take genuine action to stop the killings against human rights defenders in accordance with the domestic laws and the Universal Declaration on Human Rights Defenders as adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN).

If you have further questions, please do not hesitate to contact KARAPATAN in Manila, Philippines.

Urgent Appeals Desk
Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC)


UA Date: 02 October 2005
UA Case: Summary Execution

Victim/s: Victoria Samonte
– 51 years old, married with one (1) child,
– Female
– A resident of Castillo Bagong Lipunan, BLISS Project, Barangay Mancarogo, Bislig City, Surigao del Surigao, Philippines
– Regional Vice-Chair, *KMU-CARAGA
– President, Andres Soriano College Employees Union
– Chairperson, ACT-Bislig
– President, Drivers & Operators of Cumawas and Bliss Association (DOCUBA)
– General Secretary, Bislig City Alliance of Transport Association (BCATA)
– President, Castillo Bagong Lipunan Homeowners Association (CBLHA) in BLISS Project, Barangay Mancarogo, Bislig City
– 6th nominee for **ANAKPAWIS, during the last May 2004 National elections

*KMU – Kilusang Mayo Uno or May First Movement is the leading labor alliance in the Philippines
**ANAKPAWIS in Filipino means “Toiling Masses” it is a Partylist Organization representing both workers and peasants at the Philippine House of Representatives.

Place of Incident: Along the national highway in Barangay Mancarogo, Bislig City, Surigao del Sur, Philippines

Date of Incident: 30 September 2005 about 9:45PM

Perpetrators: Unidentified man armed with a foot-long knife wearing a hat and a sweatshirt, with fair complexion

Account of Incident:

At about 9:40 in the evening of 30 September 2005, Mrs. Victoria Samonte or “Ma’m Vicky” to those close to her, together with her neighbor co-teacher  Ms. Mansueta “Sweet” Sanchez, rented a motorcycle going home to BLISS Project in Barangay Mancarogo from Andres Soriano College in Barangay Mangagoy, after attending the school foundation day activities. About 100 meters away from the school, a man wearing a hat and a sweatshirt flagged down the motorcycle for a ride. The driver refused because he had been already rented by the two ladies, but Ma’m Vicky who was sitting alone in the front seat, asked the man where was he going, to which he responded Barangay Cumawas. Since it was not out of the way where the two women were headed, Ma’m Vicky let the man ride with them.

The man sat beside Sweet at the back part of the motorcycle even after she requested him to transfer and sit on the other side.

When they reached Barangay Cumawas, Ma’m Vicky asked the man where in Cumawas will they drop him of. The man replied: ” further ahead”. When they reached Barangay Mancarogo, Ma’m Vicky asked the man the same question. The man only repeated his previous reply. By this time Ma’m Vicky requested the driver to bring the man first to wherever his destination was.

Upon reaching a dimly lit part of the highway, about 100 meters away from the crossing of BLISS Project, the man finally stopped the driver and paid his fare then walked along the national highway towards Bislig City. Witnesses who stood by at a waiting shed nearby saw the man running towards the single motorcycle waiting for him about 70 meters ahead.

Meanwhile, as the motorcycle turned back to proceed to BLISS Project, Ma’m Vicky felt she had been stabbed on her back and asked Sweet to take a look at it. In the darkness, Mrs. Sanchez ran her hand on Ma’m Vicky’s back and felt something stuck on it. She immediately pulled out a knife. She instantly told the driver to go back to Mangagoy, where the nearest hospital was. There Ma’m Vicky was declared dead on arrival


Send letters, emails or fax messages calling for:

1. The immediate formation of an independent fact-finding and investigation team composed of representatives from human rights groups, the Church, local government, and the Commission on Human Rights that will look into the summary execution of Victoria “Ma’m Vicky” Samonte;

2. The arrest and prosecution of the perpetrators of the crime of summary execution;

3. The immediate and proper indemnification of the family/relatives of the victims; and

4. The Philippine Government to be reminded that it is a signatory to theUniversal Declaration of Human Rights and that it is also a party to all the major Human Rights instruments, thus it is bound to observe all of its provisions.

You may send your communications to:

H.E. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
President of the Republic
Malacanang Palace,
JP Laurel St., San Miguel
Manila Philippines
Voice: (+632) 564 1451 to 80
Fax: (+632) 742-1641 / 929-3968
Cell#: (+ 63) 919 898 4622 / (+63) 917 839 8462
E-mail: /

Hon. Rene Sarmiento
OIC-Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process
7F Agustin Building I
Emerald Avenue
Pasig City, Philippines
Voice: (+632) 636 0701 to 0766
Fax: (+632) 638 2216

Hon. Avelino Cruz
Secretary, Department of National Defense
Camp Emilio Aguinaldo
E. de los Santos Avenue,
Quezon City, Philippines
Voice: (+632) 912-9281
Fax: (+632) 911 6213

Hon. Purificacion Valera Quisumbing
Chairperson, Commission on Human Rights
SAAC Bldg., UP Complex
Commonwealth Avenue
Diliman, Quezon City
Fax: (+632) 929 0102

Please send us a copy of your email/mail/fax to the said government official to our address below.

URGENT ACTION Prepared by:

KARAPATAN (Alliance for the Advancement of People’s Rights)-National Office
43 Masikap St. Barangay Pinyahan, Quezon City 1100 PHILIPPINES
Voice: (+632) 435 4146 / Fax: (+632) 928 6078
Emails: <> /
Website: <>


Thank you.

Urgent Appeals Programme
Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC)

To support this case, please click here: SEND APPEAL LETTER


Document Type : Forwarded Urgent Appeal
Document ID : FA-29-2005
Countries : Philippines,
Campaigns : Stop extra-judicial killings in the Philippines
Issues : Human rights defenders,