MANILA - Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra on Monday ordered the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to probe the killing of a lawyer in South Cotabato last week.
Guevarra, in a letter to NBI Officer-in-Charge Eric Distor, also ordered a case build-up on the killing of human rights legal counsel Juan Gammad Macababbad.
The justice chief also told the NBI to file appropriate charges against persons who will be found involved in the murder of Macababbad.
"Further, OIC Distor is hereby directed to submit reports on the progress of the subject investigation directly to the Office of the Secretary within ten (10) days and periodically thereafter," Guevarra said.
Macababbad, 68, was a member of the National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers and vice-chair of the Union of Peoples’ Lawyers in Mindanao. He was shot dead by unidentified men outside his home in Surallah town.
He is the 58th lawyer and the third NUPL member killed under the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, the UPLM said earlier.
"The murder of Atty. Macababbad is connected to his vocation of lawyering for the people," it said in a statement, adding the victim had received death threats before the incident.
Philippine National Police chief Gen. Guillermo Eleazar has already ordered the Soccsksargen police to conduct a "thorough investigation" into the killing of Macababbad.
FROM THE ARCHIVES