Silvestre Maratas, a 38-year-old farmer and vice chairperson of Kaponungan sa mag Mag-uuma sa Surigao del Sur (KAMASS), was killed on July 16, 2017, inside his house in San Miguel town, Suringao del Sur, in the Philippines.
On the night of the incident, he was at home when unidentified men started shooting at the house and hit him several times.
Silvestre Maratas had been previously harassed and received several threats. Witnesses also said that on more than one occasion military agents were seen passing by his house.
Even though the information received by the UN Special Rapporteur indicates that Mr. Maratas was never a New People’s Army (NPA) rebel and was never involved in combat operations, he had been publicly red-tagged in military media platforms as a NPA recruiter and was charged with attempted murder in connection with an encounter between the military and the NPA in 2016.
The truth is he was a peasant leader, the vice chairperson of the farmers’ progressive organisation Kaponungan sa mag Mag-uuma sa Surigao del Sur (KAMASS), an affiliate of the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KNP), and a member of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Provincial Committee.