A Statement on the Killings of Tumahubong Workers

GREAT RIGHTEOUSNESS DOES NOT OPPRESS

The Almighty is beyond our reach and exalted in power; in his justice and great righteousness, he does not oppress.

–Job 37:23

         & nbsp; In a span of ten months from October of 2011 to today, three incidents of pointless ambushes were reported in the island of Basilan. These claimed a total of seventeen (17) precious lives and more than forty (40) critically injured. Victims were rubber plantation workers, guards and ordinary civilians who ply to their work early in the morning just to earn their family’s daily keep. Some were husbands to wives, committed Church and community workers and fathers of now orphaned children. Again, last July 11, 2012, another barbaric ambush took eight lives.

         & nbsp; Stop all these bloodshed in Basilan! The Claretians shall not tire in condemning these senseless violence and blatant disregard for the value of life. The continued deception of arm conflict, political unwillingness and economic gluttony that perpetuates in the society of Basilan. We question those in authority, what have you done to protect and grant justice to the lives of the people? We question the military, why are our people caught in the path of the bullets? We ask the church, what have we done to the values of the people and appreciation for peace? We call upon all the armed groups in Basilan to put aside hostilities and greed. We call on all the sectors of the communities in Basilan to condemn this act and dispel all fear that these savage armed group wish to paralyze the people. Let us all together vanquish evil that posses these boars who initiated these monstrous acts.

              Let us all be steadfast in our faith and stand ground in the grace of a merciful God, who sent His Son who too was tormented by the evil of this world. We pray for the souls of the victims that they find favor in the gates of paradise. Let us pray for the families whom the workers have left behind, may the spirit dwell in them in this time of pain. We pray for swift justice be granted upon the victims. Let us not allow evil to rule over us.

Claretian Missionaries – Philippine Province

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