MANILA – The widow of slain Negros Oriental Governor Roel Degamo on Thursday called on the Senate to investigate the killing of her husband and other unsolved deaths in the province.
Speaking with TeleRadyo, Pamplona Mayor Janice Degamo said that while several agencies were looking into her husband's assassination, a Senate probe could boost their chances of getting justice.
“I would want po people in the whole world na malaman talaga kung anong pinaggagawa ng mga ito sa (what is happening here in) Negros…’pag may Senate investigation po, malamang mas makakamtan namin ang hustisya,” she stressed.
“Sa observation ko at sa research ko, mas marami ang mga nabigyan ng hustisya doon sa mga krimen na dumaan talaga sa isang Senate investigation.”
(If there is a Senate investigation, justice is more likely. Based on my observation and research, a case is more likely to be closed once there is a Senate probe.)
The Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs in 2019 investigated a series of shooting incidents in Negros Oriental, which killed at least 17 civilians and 4 policemen in just 10 days, from July 18 to July 28 that year.
The panel later recommended that the police and military investigate its own personnel in connection with the killings.
Sen. Risa Hontiveros this month filed a resolution seeking a Senate investigation into a recent "series of political killings," the latest of which was the assassination of Gov. Degamo.
At least 10 people are now in government custody for their alleged involvement in Degamo’s killing. The task force dedicated to probing his slay said they are looking for 5 or 6 more suspects.
Negros Oriental Third District Rep. Arnolfo Teves is also being investigated for his alleged involvement in Degamo’s murder. The lawmaker has maintained he and his clan had nothing to do with the crime.
Teves, who has been out of the country since February, was suspended on Wednesday by his colleagues in the House of Representatives for 60 days for his continued absence from the lower chamber.
Teves has cited alleged threats to his life for refusing to return the Philippines despite President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr.’s assuring his safety.
Mayor Degamo said Teves should not be afraid of anything if he had not done anything wrong.
“Kasi simple lang yan eh, pag wala tayong kasalanan, there’s nothing to fear. At hindi natin kailangan ng sundalo na magse-secure if you are confident, in the truest sense of the word, na wala kang ginawang kabulastugan, wala kang ginawang kalokohan,” she said.
(It's simple--if you've done nothing wrong, there's nothing to fear. And you don't need soldiers to secyre you if you are confident--in the truest sense of the word--that you've done nothing wrong.)