Women’s rights activist Inday Estorba, 31, was shot and killed and her husband was seriously wounded in their home in the Philippines on April 3. According to Representative Liza Largoza Maza of the Philippines’ Gabriela Women’s Party, Estorba is the sixty-eighth woman activist to be murdered under the administration of President Gloria Arroyo, whose presidency has been marked by accusations of corruption and fraud.
Estorba was a member of the Gabriela Women’s Party and an employee of the Women’s Development Center. Maza asserts that the murder fits into Arroyo’s plan to impose martial law by silencing critics and progressive activists. She stated, Inday Estorba, for being an active Gabriela member and an advocate for women’s rights has been identified as a target of Arroyo’s military.”
Arroyo imposed martial law between February 24 and March 3 and charged members of the military, legislators and activists with plotting a coup to overthrow her, reports BBC. The coup was allegedly planned to coincide with the twentieth anniversary of the end of President Marcos’ dictatorship, which employed martial law for nine years, according to BBC. Arroyo is currently pursuing an anti-terror bill which Maza, with other critics, calls “the ultimate license for abuse and authoritarian rule,” reports the Sun Star Manila.