Caloocan prelate cites 9 killings in last 2 weeks
MANILA - When police killed 3 men for allegedly firing first during a buy-bust operation in Navotas at dawn Wednesday, a mother lost another son.
One of the 3 drug suspects slain in a police operation in Agora market is apparently the brother of Anthony Ocdin, the man found dead in a morgue in March 2017 after village watchers turned him over to police over disorderly conduct.
Caloocan Bishop Pablo Virgilio David wrote this in a Facebook post Wednesday, narrating how Ocdin's mother Cristina Jumola found out she had lost another son.
David, for long a critic of drug killings, called on the Philippine National Police (PNP) to bring the deaths to justice, citing 9 deaths in northern Metro Manila in the last 13 days, among them a police officer.
"All these victims have been killed only in the past few days. Most of them are classified as DUI (Deaths Under Investigation). As far as I know, most of the thousands of killings called DUI remain 'under investigation,' meaning, unresolved," David said.
He said a journalist had recognized Jumola as the same woman he saw in a Christmas gift-giving event for families of victims of extrajudicial killings at the San Roque Cathedral in 2017.
"The woman described to the journalist what her son was wearing. When he was finally able to take a picture of the crime scene, he saw that indeed, one of the three victims fitted Cristina's description of her other son," David wrote.
"The journalist told me he could not find the strength to tell her that indeed her other son was dead," he said.
When Jumola saw her son's body, she "totally lost control and went hysterical" that she had to be "dragged out by the police," the prelate further wrote.
"Here’s what the journalist said to me: 'I felt so sorry for her and could not find strength to console her. It was so unfair and I could not even understand why she had to go through all of it again.'"
David cited a string of killings over the last 2 weeks: one slain in Malabon by an unidentified assailant on May 24; another in Navotas on May 27; 2 in separate incidents on May 31, including the shooting of a Navotas police officer in Malabon; another slay on June 3 involving an unknown shooter in Navotas; and a man who had been missing for 5 days killed in an "alleged police encounter" in June 4 in Caloocan City.
"As bishop of Kalookan, I sincerely wish the PNP could give more time and effort at investigating the truth behind these killings than giving credence to the lies now being peddled by a certain Peter Advincula, alias 'Bikoy'," he said.
David was referring to the man who had tagged the family of President Rodrigo Duterte in the drug trade at the height of the electoral campaign, only to recant his claims, pinning the opposition in his initial allegations.
He cited how Advincula's allegations against the President's family were readily shot down as lies when he first came out, and how his claims against the opposition upon his turnaround were under investigation.
PNP chief Police General Oscar Albayalde earlier said Advincula could either be a suspect or a witness.
David also hit Advincula's latest allegations tagging him, Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas, one Father Robert and former Education Secretary Armin Luistro in supposed meetings on the alleged ouster plot against the president.
"Lately, the man has also implicated so many other names, including those of Church leaders and religious personalities who may have made no other mistake than believing that the man’s life was really in danger and that he needed sanctuary," David said.
"Jesus was right in saying that he expected his disciples to be 'innocent as doves but clever as serpents.' Could some naive and well-meaning people in the Church have ended up being stung by a hungry serpent whom they had fed?" he wrote.
He also denied being in a meeting with administration critic Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV, among personalities Advincula tagged in the supposed ouster plot, and a certain Jonel.