Raymart Siapo

The murder victim who couldn't run away It was the message every mother dreads, but this mom was working in an Arab household in Kuwait. OFW Luzviminda Siapo's employer didn't want to believe that Luzviminda's son Raymart had just been killed. Luzviminda wailed and knelt and begged, and still her employer thought she ...

The murder victim who couldn’t run away

It was the message every mother dreads, but this mom was working in an Arab household in Kuwait.

OFW Luzviminda Siapo’s employer didn’t want to believe that Luzviminda’s son Raymart had just been killed.

Luzviminda wailed and knelt and begged, and still her employer thought she was lying to get out of her contract and go home. Only when her boss was shown online news video about 19-year-old Raymart’s brutal murder in Navotas did the employer let her go.

When she arrived last Monday, the police had little information to share. But the mother steeled herself and began probing the murder herself, interviewing witnesses and assembling the savage pieces of a puzzle.

Her son had an argument with a neighbor. Soon the son’s name was found on the community blotter as a drug suspect.

Men in bonnets over their faces came to his neighborhood and took him away.

Witnesses say he was last seen at night being brought by motorcycle to a nearby bridge, and being told to get down.

“Takbo, takbo!” his captors taunted. Raymart, who was supposed to start a new job the next day, didn’t run and just sat down. One of the assassins, called a “birador” by the police, shot him below the chin and on the side of his head.

Raymart couldn’t run even if he wanted to – he was born with two club feet, a congenital deformity that made him appear to be walking on the sides of his feet. He was a Person With Disability.

Luzviminda showed my colleagues and me her last text conversation with Raymart on her cell phone. It was about the birth certificate he needed for his new job.

One of the very last messages from Raymart was simply, “salamat ma,” followed by a smiling selfie.

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