Ka Randall Echanis, hero of the toiling masses
The revolutionary movement and people paid their highest honors to National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) consultant and Anakpawis Partylist chairperson Randall Echanis (Ka Randy) last August 17. A caravan was held by his relatives, comrades and supporters from Quezon City to Marikina City where his remains were buried.
Ka Randy was brutally killed along with his neighbor last August 10 in Novaliches, Quezon City. Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas chairperson Danilo Ramos described the killing of Echanis and other NDFP consultants, as the “worst blow against peace in the Philippines.”
Ka Randy played a key role in preparing the draft and final version of the Comprehensive Agreement on Socioeconomic Reforms (CASER) between the NDFP and the Government of the Republic of the Philippines. As member of the Reciprocal Working Committee for Social and Economic Reforms of the NDFP, he spearheaded the drafting of the provisions for the Agrarian Reform and Rural Development section of CASER. “He used his vast knowledge to push for the free distribution of land to peasants as part of genuine land reform and national industrialization,” stated the NDFP.
The Pambansang Katipunan ng mga Magbubukid described him as an “extraordinary revolutionary who, from his youth until his last breath, struggled for freedom and democracy.” In his youth, he was known as Ka Makar in the countryside.
The Communist Party of the Philippines paid tribute to him for devoting his life to serving the peasant masses and advancing peace that based is based on justice. The Party described him as an “ageless revolutionary fighter.”
Ka Randy was described by his comrades as a cheerful, calm, and humble leader who is well-loved by farmers. He was fondly called “Tatang” by younger activists.
“Ka Randy did not die in vain. He died as a well-loved hero and martyr of the peasant and people’s movement. His lifelong struggle for land, justice, and peace is worth emulating,” said his wife Erlinda on the burial day.