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Teófilo Acuña

HRD, Co-Founder & Spokesperson
Congreso de los Pueblos

Teófilo Acuña was a defender of the rights of peasant communities; throughout his life he exercised a widely recognised social leadership in the departments of Cesar, Magdalena and Santander. He was a spokesman and co-founder of civil organisations promoting the rights of peasant communities such as the Congreso de los Pueblos, the Coordinador Nacional Agrario - CNA and the Cumbre Agraria, Campesina, Étnica y Popular - CACEP (Agrarian, Peasant, Ethnic and Popular Summit). Teófilo also founded and served as leader of the Federación Agrominera del Sur de Bolívar - FEDEAGROMISBOL, where he represented thousands of peasants who depend on agriculture and small-scale gold mining. Since 2005, he has led roundtables with the national government, as spaces for dialogue between the productive and social sectors and the state to generate agreements for rural development. Teofilo was murdered on 22 February 2022 in the village of Puerto Oculto, municipality of San Martín, department of Cesar.

Two days before they were killed, the CISBCSC had publicly denounced that the peasant communities of the village of Puerto Oculto were being threatened and harassed by people allegedly linked to the mayor's office of San Martín, the police and a landowner in the municipality. by unidentified individuals.


HRDs at risk in Colombia come from a broad range of different backgrounds, including: trade unionists, indigenous leaders, afro-colombian leaders, activists working with internally displaced persons and on land issues, women's rights defenders, journalists, lawyers, students and youth activists, church workers, LGBTI and HIV activists.