Stab Wounds on Ramento’s Body Show Intent to Kill, Not Rob — Satur

Oct. 04, 2006

MANILA — The stab wounds on slain Iglesia Filipina Independiente Bishop Alberto Ramento’s body reveal an intent to kill, not rob.

Thus said House Deputy Minority Leader and Bayan Muna Rep. Satur Ocampo who today led two other legislators and the leader of the country’s biggest activist alliance in paying respect at the wake for the murdered IFI bishop at San Sebastian Parish Church in Tarlac City.

“The initial findings of the police saying that robbers killed Bishop Ramento may not be true at all. The stab wounds on the bishop’s body — three in the back with one piercing the lung, and three in the chest, with one cutting through the chestbone and heart — show an intent to kill, not rob,” said Ocampo.

Joining Ocampo in Tarlac City were Anakpawis Rep. Rafael Mariano, Gabriela Rep. Liza Maza and Bagong Alyansang Makabayan Chairwoman Dr. Carol Pagaduan Araullo.

Ramento, one of President’s vocal critics and an advocate of peace and human rights, was found dead at dawn yesterday inside his house in Tarlac.

According to Ocampo, Ramento’s murder may be an offshoot of his positions on a variety of issues from the Hacienda Luisita strike he supported, his opposition to Charter change, his condemnation of political slays and his role in the GRP-NDF peace negotiations.

Local police swifly claimed robbery as a motive in Ramento’s slay, a claim rejected by a team of churchpeople that found no evidence of theft in the bishop’s modest residenfe.

Ramento served as Obispo Maximo (supreme bishop) of the IFI for two terms. He was co-chair with Novaliches Catholic Bishop Deogracias Iniguez of the Ecumenical Bishops Forum and president of the IFI bishops’ conference.

In an anti-Arroyo protest on June 12, Ramento spoke vigorously against charter change and demanded an end to political slays whose victimized several IFI members.

During the rally, the crowd applauded Ramonte’s report that 100 percent of IFI bishops were opposed to Chacha, especially the proposed provision allowing foreign ownership of land. “I am proud to lead a council of revolutionary bishops.”

Under Ramonte, IFI exressed full support for striking Hacienda Luisita farmworkers even after the killing of IFI priest William Tadena who ministered to the strikers.

Ramonte was also a third party depository of documents and credentials in the GRP-NDF peace talks.

Formed during the 1896 revolution, the IFI continues its active involvement in a wide range of national issues.

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