On the 27 August 2017 Lomer Gerodias was shot dead in Compostela Valley. Gerodias was a small scale miner and a member of Abante, an organisation that advocated for the labour rights of miners in the area. Abante is also an affiliate of Hugpong sa mga Mag-uuma sa Walog, Compostela (HUMAWAC), a peasant organisation.
Gerodias was an active supporter of the rights of peasants and miners in his community. Around 7pm he was travelling from Poblacion Maragusan to Magkagong in Walog when he was shot and killed. It is alleged that the attacker was a military asset of the 66th Infantry Battalion Philippine Army.
Leaders of HUMAWAC reported that they are being labelled as supporters of the New People’s Army, the armed wing of the Filipino communist party. The labelling of Human Rights Defenders(HRDS) as members of militant groups is a common strategy employed by authoritarian regimes to justify killings. Cristina Palabay, secretary general of Karapatan said the death of the HRDs was “a result of Duterte’s counterinsurgency campaign and made worse by his Martial law declaration in Mindanao.”