Senators mull summoning Davao cops for DDS probe


Posted at Sep 23 2016 02:22 PM | Updated as of Sep 23 2016 06:17 PM

MANILA - Senators are mulling over a resolution to summon members of the Davao Police in a congressional probe so they can be questioned about the Davao Death Squad (DDS) allegedly headed by former Davao Mayor and now President Rodrigo Duterte, a lawmaker said Friday.

"I still have to meet other senators to discuss if that is necessary because it would be unlikely for the police to admit that they are part of the alleged Davao Death Squad," Senate Committee on Justice and Human Rights chair Senator Richard Gordon said.

Senator Antonio Trillanes IV has filed a resolution seeking an inquiry into the DDS.

Trillanes filed the resolution in the wake of criticism from Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III that the ongoing Senate committee on justice and human rights probe on extra-judicial killings “went out of bounds” by tackling allegations involving the DDS.

Gordon said an executive session will be held to vet the credibility of the witnesses who may be summoned to the probe on the DDS, but declined to comment on self-confessed DDS hitman Edgar Matobato's credibility.

"I don't want the committee to be biased but Matobato gave not a few, but a lot of inconsistencies. But the hearing is not yet over so we still can't pass judgment (on his credibility)," Gordon said.

Gordon hopes to wrap up hearings on extra-judicial killings by September 28.

But Senator Panfilo Lacson said a more extensive probe should be done to "determine whether the killings are extrajudicial or not."

"(We need to know) If these killings were not perpetrated by the Philippine National Police, what are they doing to stop these killings?" Lacson said.