Whenever the citizens of the Philippines celebrates the EDSA 1 People Power Revolution every February, it coincides the commemorating of the gruesome murder of a former Antique Governor Evelio Javier. But do you know who is Evelio Javier and what is his role that leads to the world’s first bloodless revolution?
Before the start of the peaceful People Power Revolution on February of 1986 (also known as EDSA 1), the then President Ferdinand Marcos giveway for a Snap Election which will be hailed on February 07, 1986. The opposition had the former President Corazon Aquino (Cory for short) to run againstthe incumbent Marcos.
Meanwhile, Javier becomes the Governor of Antique from 1972 up to 1980. After his term, Javier went to the US because he was given a study grant. Javier studied in America for two years before he decided to go back to the Philippines and help the opposition party during the 1986 Snap election campaign.
When Javier’s close friend Ninoy Aquino was assassinated when he arrived from the tarmac of then Manila International Airport in 1983, Javier also decided to went back home to support the opposition.
In the 1986 Snap Election, Javier (at 43 years old) served as a campaign manager of the opposition in the province of Tarlac (Cory’s main province). And in the face of the allegation that a widespread cheating was made to which Marcos declared the winner, Javier was ambushed while he was on the main plaza of the Antique capitol. He wasgunned down in front of a crowd by armed men on February 11, 1986.
According to the reports and witnesses accounts, during the first burst of fire, Javier was able to run despite the gunshot wounds that he sustained on different parts of his body. The former governor was able to hide in a toilet room not far from the plaza. But the assailants manage to followed him and sprayed with bullets which ended his life.
The assassination of Javier is also one of the key to whom the sparks the Filipino people which ended up in the first People Power Revolution in EDSA which started on February 22 and ended after three days when Marcos decided to leave Malacanyang Palace.
A case was filed to one of Marcos’s supporter and a former Assemblyman Arturo Pacificador. Pacificador apparently was the masterminded behind the gruesome murder of Javier. But when the trial brings to a verdict, Pacificador was found not guilty of the murder case and was set free. While some of his men was found guilty and was sentence to be imprisoned as the culprit on the gruesome murder of Javier.
Author’s note: Another compiling story and history of my motherland and its citizens.