Mario Ignacio IV, a photojourn graduate from the Philippines, graced the recent launch of his first photobook, ”Silenced: Extrajudicial killings and torture in the Philippines.”
The book features a collection of images of 14 human rights victims and how their lives changed because of extrajudicial killings and torture. Mario or Boyet as he is fondly called said, “ These fourteen stories I captured in photos have been forgotten or have fallen out of media attention,”
The book highlights, among others, two young daughters of a women’s rights advocate who tried to live normal lives even as they attended the trial of their mother’s murder in Tagbilaran City almost every month. Also featured was a Lumad family in Davao who continued to suffer from the death of their patriarch as they sought ways to hold on to their ancestral land. Another photo story was of a wife in North Cotabato who had to deal with her husband, a bus bombing suspect and a victim of torture,”
Mario said these families continue to live in fear, but harbor hope that their loves ones will obtain justice in the end.
Mario Ignacio is a graduate of ACFJ’s Diploma in Photojournalism program in 2010. He currently assists Vera Files in its human rights case watch http://verafiles.org/human-rights-case-watch/). In 2010, he got accepted to the 2010 Eddie Adams Workshop in New York (http://www.eddieadamsworkshop.com/).
The book launching took place at the Linden Suites in Ortigas, Pasig City on 29 September 2011. Present were veteran photographer and ACFJ faculty Luis Liwanag, who helped edit the photo and VERA Files trustee Luz Rimban, also an ACFJ faculty, who assisted in editing the articles.
The book is the end product of the Human Rights Case Watch project where VERA Files revisited cases of forced disappearances and extra-judicial killings that have remained unsolved and have received hardly any media attention. The project was supported by a grant from The Asia Foundation and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).