January 5, 2017
GORDON EYES BLUE RIBBON PROBE ON CALOOCAN KILLINGS; SLAMS SLOW POLICE PROBE
With the spate of killings that greeted the last few days of 2016 and the first few days of the New Year, Senator Richard J. Gordon is considering conducting an inquiry into the reasons for law enforcers being slow in investigating the killings, particularly those committed in Caloocan City at the start of the week.
Gordon, chair of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, pointed out that the committee can conduct a motu proprio investigation when misfeasance, malfeasance or non-feasance is committed.
"I am contemplating conducting an investigation into these recent killings. The Blue Ribbon Committee can conduct a motu proprio inquiry into these killings. What is taking the police so long to finish the investigations? If they are not conducting an investigation then they are not doing their job. That is non-feasance. If they did their job but did not do it properly, that is malfeasance," he said.
The senator reiterated the need for the creation of a joint Congressional oversight committee to monitor killings, which he proposed in the Committee on Justice and Human Rights Report that was submitted to the Senate last year following the committee's inquiry into recent and rampant killings. Gordon also chairs the Committee on Justice and Human Rights.
"The report proposed that the Philippine National Police (PNP) shall submit to the oversight committee a monthly report on the killings committed nationwide. It should show the statistics per province, per city, per municipality and the status of cases. This way we can see the areas where there are high incidents of unsolved killings and then we can call the pertinent police officers to question them and make recommendations afterwards," he said.
Gordon also noted that should an investigation be conducted, it would also enable the Senate to determine any deficiencies in the PNP that should be addressed so that it could serve the people better.
"In our investigation last year, we were able to establish that thousands of killings with impunity have been taking place every year in the last two decades at least. Many of the killings have remained unsolved to date which have already engendered apathy in the people. If we investigate, the PNP can tell us what they need, as I have read, they need 74,000 investigators, If we can provide at least half of the investigators they need, that would already be an improvement," he said.
"Killing is killing and killing is murder. We cannot allow our country to have these deaths to remain uninvestigated," Gordon added.
A few days before 2016 ended, gunmen shot dead seven people including three teenagers and a pregnant woman in a violent incident suspected to be linked to a feud involving illegal drugs in Caloocan. One of the suspects has been arrested. Last Monday night, in a separate incident, four people were killed in Caloocan when assailants on board a motorcycle stormed the house where the victims were in and peppered them with bullets.
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