Senator Alan Peter Cayetano and 15 other senators on Monday strongly urged the Philippine National Police (PNP) and other law enforcement agencies to address the series of gun attacks against local government officials and civilians that have led to deaths and injuries.
“The Senate of the Philippines, in the strongest sense, urges the Philippine National Police and other law enforcement agencies to exert all efforts to bring the perpetrators to justice,” Cayetano and fellow senators – led by Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri – wrote in Resolution No. 517 which they filed on March 6, 2023.
This after Negros Oriental Governor Roel Ragay Degamo was shot to death on March 4, 2023 by armed men in his own home in Pamplona, Negros Oriental – the latest of four attacks against local officials this year.
The senators lamented how in just a span of 15 days – from February 17 to March 4 this year – two local executives were killed by armed men in broad daylight. Seventeen civilians were also left dead while two others were injured.
Two separate cases of ambush in February resulted in the injury of Governor Mamintal Adiong Jr. of Lanao del Sur and Mayor Ohto Montawal of Datu Montawal, Maguindanao.
In the same month, Vice Mayor Rommel Alameda of Aparri, Cagayan and five others who were with him were ambushed and killed in Bagabag, Nueva Vizcaya.
The senators stressed the urgent need to apprehend the criminals “not only for the sake of all victims and their families, but also to ensure that the rule of law is upheld at all times for an orderly and peaceful society.”
Citing a Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey conducted last December, the lawmakers said 50 percent of 1,200 Filipino adult participants said they were afraid to walk the streets at night “because it is not safe.”
Senate Resolution No. 517 expresses the “sense of the Senate strongly condemning the recent spate of killings and attacks against government officials and private persons, and urging Philippine National Police and other law enforcement agencies to undertake the necessary steps in ensuring the safety of all.”
“Injustice and violence do not have a place in any civilized society, and no cause justifies brutalities against the lives of all persons,” the senators said.