Four gunmen riding two motorcycles were targeting local government councillor Roberto Cudal, who was injured in the incident.
After helping his uncle fix his jeepney, a local minibus, Ronjhay was shot in the abdomen while waiting for his meal and died.
Police have killed an estimated 5,601 people in so-called “legitimate anti-drug operations”, when alleged suspects have fought back and police officers have shot them.
But the official death toll does not take into account executions by unidentified gunmen – the Philippines Commission on Human Rights has estimated the death toll could be as high as 27,000 people over nearly four years.
The United Nation’s Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights will present a report on human rights issues in the Philippines in June and it is expected the country will face a concerted push to establish an independent international investigation into the drug war.
Carlos Conde, Human Rights Watch’s Philippines researcher and the author of the report, said Filipino children had suffered horribly during the drug war.
“The government needs to stop this endless violence that is upending children’s lives and direct assistance to the children harmed,” he said.
Conde added that the drug war death rate as people stayed at home to avoid the coronavirus pandemic but “drug raids are still frequent during the lockdown”.
Manila has been under community quarantine since March 16 in one of the world’s longest coronavirus lockdowns. That was modified 10 days ago to ease some restrictions and the government were meeting on Wednesday to decide whether to relax them further.
The Philippines has reported 14,669 cases of the coronavirus and 886 deaths. More than 2.5 million Filipinos have lost their jobs in the past two months, and tens of thousands more are stranded overseas without income to support families back home.
The child death revelations follow on the heels of a separate report, released Tuesday by the US-based National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children, which estimated that online sexual exploitation of children in the Philippines increased by over 260 per cent during the coronavirus lockdown, based on the spike of reports logged by the Department of Justice.
Families were facilitating the abuses in almost all cases, the report said, arguing that English fluency and widespread internet usage made the country a child pornography “global hotspot”.
The Human Rights Watch report highlighted the lasting impact – physical, emotional and economic – on children left behind after parents or siblings were slain during so-called extra-judicial killings. Some spoke about the existential crisis posed by a loss of the primary breadwinner for their family and the end of their schooling.
To date, Duterte has given no indication he is willing to end the drug war, which has been one of his signature policies since becoming president.
Security forces involved in the killings have mostly escaped being held to account, too. Police officers have been convicted in just one case and of the 76 cases investigated by the Department of Justice, just 33 have resulted in charges filed against police officers.
James Massola is south-east Asia correspondent based in Jakarta. He was previously chief political correspondent, based in Canberra. He has been a Walkley and Quills finalist on three occasions, won a Kennedy Award for outstanding foreign correspondent and is the author of The Great Cave Rescue.