HRVs against Development Workers Tackled in Talk with IFI

ASCENT’s Free Ben and Rita Now! Campaign gave a talk to a group composed of 12 clergy from the Iglesia Filipina Independiente (IFI), under the Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE), last May 25, 2018 at the Ramento Project for Rights Defenders (RPRD) office in the IFI National Cathedral. CPE is part of the Center of Pastoral Care and Counselling.

Brenda Gonzalez, ASCENT Convenor and member of the Campaign team explained how the latter is currently engaged in resource generation to provide food and medicines to political detainees Benito Quilloy and Rita Espinoza.

She also discussed the other cases of human rights violations (HRVs) that development workers experienced. Among these are the extra-judicial killings of Emerito Samarca, Executive Director of the Alternative Learning Center for Agricultural and Livelihood Development (ALCADEV) and Willem Geertman who headed the Alay Bayan Incorporated (ABI), a non-government organization (NGO) for disaster response and health programs in Center Luzon. She said that ASCENT was established in response to the clamor of development NGOs to address HRVs committed by state security forces against development workers.

The IFI clergy vowed to assist ASCENT in administering to the spiritual needs not only of Ben and Rita but also to the other political detainees in the National Capital Region (NCR). Rt. Reverend Mervin Elimanco of the Dinagat Diocese also recommended addressing the needs of political detainees especially those from the peasant sector and who are imprisoned outside of NCR. #








Published by


AscentPH is a national alliance of development organizations determinedly working for the empowerment of the people through poverty alleviation and promoting and defending the right to development and other fundamental human rights and freedoms.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.