NDFP Peace Panel on the passing of human rights advocate Marie Hilao-Enriquez
The National Democratic Front of the Philippines Peace Negotiating Panel extends its deepest condolence to the family, comrades, colleagues and friends of our beloved and most admired Amaryllis “Marie” Hilao-Enriquez who passed away last April 24, 2022. We join the Filipino people in mourning her passing.
Marie will forever be remembered as the indefatigable, courageous and daring advocate of justice and peace. Having carried its torch for the Filipino people she served so selflessly, she faced the enemy firmly and determinedly to protect and defend their interest.
She helped found human rights organizations like KARAPATAN, SELDA-Samahan ng Ex-Detainees Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto, KAPATID-Samahan ng Ex-Detainees Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto, Kapisanan para sa Pagpapalaya at Amnestiya ng mga Detenidong Pulitikal and TFD-Task Force Detainees.
After the Negotiating Panels of the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) signed the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL), Marie was asked to be an Independent Observer of the Joint Monitoring Committee of the NDFP. She gave valuable advice and input to the NDFP Negotiating Panel in the exercise of this task.
She fought for the interests and well-being of political prisoners and other victims of human rights violations.
She never ceased to attend to victims the of human rights violations especially those from the toiling masses. She felt their pain, anger and desire for justice. After all, she and other members of her immediate family were themselves arrested, tortured and imprisoned during the Ferdinand Marcos dictatorship. Her sister Liliosa Hilao was one of the first tortured and killed during the Marcos dictatorship.
She was indefatigable. She knew how important it was to inform the international community on the dire situation of human rights in the Philippines. So even when her health was deteriorating she still traveled to attend international forums, investigating committees and courts. Her voice became the voice of those in prison, of those in their graves.
She believed that one must fight exploitation, oppression and injustice for a people to be genuinely free. For Marie, upholding human rights is not just an advocacy, it is a passion.
Marie always said that the souls of those who suffered arrest, torture, disappearance and extra-judicial killing are still crying out for justice. Like Marie, we should never tire, waver or yield an inch in crying out for genuine justice until it is finally served.#