NEWS: Mayor Cee O: “No cause for alarm”

On rise of killings in Tagum

oct 14

Tagum Mayor Rey Chiong Uy in a report of DXDN Radyo Ukay in Tagum early morning yesterday said that the city’s statistics on killings reported by the police “is no cause for alarm” adding that that those “salvaged” or killed were bad elements in the society, “mga kawatan, holdupper, snatcher, akyat bahay… so walay dapat ikaalarma.”

Asked in an exclusive field interview the other day by Ruel Dagsangan, anchor of Radyo Ukay’s early morning newscast program, the mayor added that the city in fact had been banking on its good peace and order situation in receiving continuing confidence from people for its continuing development.

In the same Radyo Ukay report, Vice Mayor Allan Rellon condemned extrajudicial killings in the city saying that the “root cause of the problem” should be addressed to in an effort of helping the police solve it.

The mayor’s and vice mayor’s statements came close to the heels of provincial police reports on the rise of crimes against persons particularly shooting incidents in the city that accounted the bulk in the reported cases throughout Davao del Norte.

Provincial police director PSSupt. Benelito Bianzon bared a total of 54 shooting incidents from January to October 10 in the city last Friday’s Sangguniang Panlalawigan’s human rights committee hearing-inquiry initiated by Boardmember Antonio Lagunzad, the committee chairman.

The crime statistics included the still unresolved slaying of long-time serving former Mankilam barangay captain and kagawad Noel dela Cruz.

PSSupt. Bianzon however that police has solved 23 crimes and a lot of petty crimes like stabbing, hacking and others and recovered many loose firearms in their Operation Kapkap.

But he also bared on increasing death threats which he said the police has been meeting difficulties in responding to all requests for protection considering the limited number of police personnel.

In that committee hearing, the police director admitted difficulties and loose ends in stemming off the rising crime index in the city primarily owing to the lack of police personnel to secure the high city population even as he said that the province is still generally peaceful.

He called on for active civilian support while asserting that police has all been doing its work to secure the populace.

Also in that hearing, Bianzon downplayed reports on the presence of death squad operating in the city, but he admitted the police is looking into reports on hired killers. PSSupt. also cited various causes and motives in the rise of shooting incidents in the city.

The hearing led to various initial proposals in addressing the problem of criminality which the SP committee had documented.

Boardmember Lagunzad said that extrajudicial killing is a human rights violation and vowed to continue his committee’s probe. He planned to conduct activities with barangay officials to address the problem.

Also present during last Friday’s committee hearing-inquiry held at Lakan’s Place were Boardmembers Jose Recarido Federiso, Ely Dacalus, Artemio San Juan, Salvador Royo, and SK federation president Dennis Café, Tagum City police chief PSupt. Dario Gunabe, CIDG-Davao del Norte provincial director PSupt. Rowena Garma, and some members of the family of the slain Dela Cruz who shared their fearful plight to the committee. (Cha Monforte/Rural Urban News)


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