On Saturday, September 13, 2014, Higaunon Tribal Leader Datu Sandigan (Fausto Orasan), a staunch anti-mining advocate and campaigner against deforestation, was shot and killed in the hinterlands of Cagayan de Oro City by yet unknown assailants. While the exact motive of the crime has yet to be established, it is believed that it is related to his positions on mining and the environment.
The following Saturday, August 20, members of the Project Management Committee of MPI's Resource-Based Conflict and Peacebuilding Training Program, Phase II, wrote the document below demanding justice for the killing of Datu Sandigan.
"Dying now or dying tomorrow is the same death. What should make a difference is what we are doing when we are still living."
The above is among the most-remembered statements of Datu Sandigan Fausto Orasan, often recalled by fellow tribal leaders of the Higaunon tribe and his response to the warning by his wife.
He was proven both right and wrong when his life was taken away by assassins' bullets in the afternoon of Saturday, 13th of September, 2014 in Barangay Tuburan in the hinterlands of Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines on his way home to Barangay Pigsag-an, a hinterland barangay in the city populated by Higaunons, the indigenous people who originally inhabited the City but now living in the hinterlands.