Obillo Bay-ao, a 19-year old Lumad student of the Salugpongan Community Center, died 9:00 PM yesterday, September 5, in Davao City Regional Hospital. Obillo Bay-ao was shot at around 2:30 PM yesterday by a member of the Citizen Armed Force Geographical Unit (CAFGU) in Talaingod, Davao del Norte.

Anakbayan expresses grief and extreme rage at the brutal murder of Obillo by Duterte’s state forces. We stand in solidarity with Obillo’s family, friends and classmates, and teachers – many of whom have joined the Lakbayan national caravan to the national capital.

It is precisely this sort of state violence and fascism that compelled our fellow national minorities to march to Manila and expose the denial, death, and devastation at the hands of the fascist state and the ruling class interests it serves with an iron hand.

True to his words, Duterte has ensured that blood will continue to be shed as he pursues his regime’s fascist wars against the Filipino people. Now, Obillo Bay-ao lies dead, a victim of a reactionary state that delivers death to those who resist its anti-people, neoliberal policies. The deaths of the young, promising, and innocent will not cease as long as Philippine society is dominated by US imperialism, bureaucrat capitalism, and feudalism – as long as it is semi-colonial and semi-feudal.

The reaction of the state, now led by Duterte and his clique, has long repressed those who desire to overthrow the shackles of oppression and exploitation. Duterte’s predecessors, from Osmena to Noynoy Aquino has actively denied the calls from the people to hike wages, initiate national industrialization and land distribution, introduce a nationalist, scientific, and mass-oriented educational system and culture, and recognize the rights of national minorities.

Instead, every fascist and puppet regime has set its mercenary armed forces to suppress the people and their interests. We mourn for Obillo now as generations of working-class and oppressed Filipinos have wept for those lost in Escalante in 1985, in Mendiola in 1987, and Hacienda Luisita in 2004, to name but a few.

The reactionary state with the ruling Duterte clique at its head is run by the comprador bourgeoisie, bureaucrat capitalists, and big landlords and is thus incapable of truly addressing the Filipino people’s democratic and nationalist aspirations.

Duterte is but the latest holder of the throne of a reactionary state that has killed and will kill the poor and vulnerable as long as it exists. The only sanctum oppressed Filipinos have against the relentless assault against their life and rights is the building of a powerful mass movement that struggles for a national democratic and socialist alternative to the current semi-colonial, semi-feudal dispensation.


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