Víctor Manuel Trujillo,was dedicated to his community and music. According to his organisation, he had to go into exile in Ecuador for three months because the state did not guarantee him security in Colombia.
The number of social leaders and human rights defenders killed in Colombia just keeps on growing. In the first days of 2019 the scandalous figure of eight assassinated leaders in the first weeks of the year shocked the country and put the issue back at the top of the public agenda.
Víctor Manuel Trujillo, from Montecristo, Bolívar, is just the latest social leader that Colombia has lost. Victtote was his stage name, because in addition to playing a role with his community, Trujillo dedicated his time to urban music. It is believed that whoever was behind the cruel murder were members of the Guillermo Ariza Front of the National Liberation Army (ELN).
Víctor Manuel was murdered on January 15 in the village of Puerto Guamo in his municipality. He was a member of the board of directors of Aheramigua but decided to withdraw due to serious threats he received from paramilitary groups. He was well known for his active participation in the agrarian strike of 2013.
Aheramigua, the organisation to which he belonged, denounced arbitrary persecutions and detentions by agents of the state, and in addition claimed that Victor Manuel had not received any state protection after having been exiled in Ecuador for three months. They believe that whoever was behind the cruel murder would be members of the Guillermo Ariza Front of the National Liberation Army, ELN.
Although the guerrilla had promised an armed truce during the Christmas and New Year period , the municipalities of El Bagre and Nechí, Antioquia, and Montecristo and Santa Rosa, Bolívar denounced the planting of anti personnel mines by members of the ELN,
Victor Manuel was not the only victim. In the village of San José de Apartadó they murdered young Deimer Usuga, near the Military Base and the police station of a corregimiento. In Apartadó, the community has denounced the presence of paramilitary groups such as the Gaitanista Self-Defense Forces, which instills fear in the social leaders of this area of the country.