Another NCTU-APL leader killed; second this month

BARELY two weeks after the death of Antonio “Dodong” Petalcorin, the transport leader who was murdered by a paid assassin in Davao City, another local leader of NCTU-APL in Cotabato City was gunned down in a brazen daytime attack again, which makes a mockery of justice and underscores the reign of impunity in the country.

Kagi Alimudin P. Lucman, 47, was killed by a lone gunman last July 18 while driving his multicab passenger jeepney along Sinsuat Ave. after taking his three young children to school. He was shot while in front of the Cotabato City State Polytechnic College at about 7 a.m. or during peak hours when students and vehicles converged near the CCSPC.

Lucman was killed by fatal gunshot wounds on his head and chest. His male companion who was seated beside him was also wounded but survived.

“Kagi,” as he was fondly called, was the president of the Notre Dame Village Operators and Drivers Association (NDVODA), which was organized in 2009 and affiliated to the NCTU-APL in 2010. He also represented NCTU-Cotabato during the NCTU National Conference in Cavite last year.

Petalcorin was the president of the Network of Transport Organizations (NETO-NCTUAPL) in Davao City and was killed on July 2. Earlier, on Jan. 25, Emilio Rivera, former head of the Matina Aplaya Transport Cooperative (MATRANSCO), an independent group but with working relations with NCTU-Davao, was also slain by assassin’s bullets.

Another partner in the Davao City-based organized transport groups, Carlos Cirilo of the Mindanao Alliance of Transport Organizations (MATO), survived an attempted killing when a grenade lobbed into his home failed to explode last May 21.

NCTU-Davao revealed that Petalcorin, Rivera and Cirilo were very active in disclosing many irregularities in the Davao office of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) and in the campaign to oust its regional director, Benjamin Go.

According to the Center for Trade Union and Human Rights (CTUHR), Petalcorin was the fifth transport leader killed since the start of President Aquino’s administration three years ago; making Lucman the sixth and they now belong to the increasing list of victims of extrajudicial killings, especially among trade unionists and social activists in the Philippines.

NCTU is the National Confederation of Transportworkers’ Unions, which is in turn both affiliated to the national labor center Alliance of Progressive Labor (APL) and the global union International Transportworkers’ Federation (ITF).

Late reporting from the local NCTU members, as well as erroneous news posted by a national broadsheet that identified Lucman as a member of a different organization, was the reason for this belated report.

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