MANILA — The House of Representatives' Makabayan bloc led by the Gabriela partylist on Tuesday filed a resolution seeking investigation into alleged "rising cases" of rape and sexual abuse perpetrated by police officers.
"Amid the raging crisis, aggravated by the pandemic, there is a constant spike of police abuses on women and children," read the resolution, co-authored by Gabriela Rep. Arlene Brosas, Bayan Muna Reps. Carlos Zarate, Ferdinand Gaite and Eufemia Cullamat, ACT Teachers Rep. France Castro, and Kabataan Rep. Sarah Jane Elago.
The progressive bloc cited data from the Center for Women's Resources. In the report dated March to October 2020, the height of enhanced community quarantine in the country, there were supposedly five cases of rape and sexual assault perpetrated by police forces.
The resolution also noted the case of Police Staff Sgt. Robin Mangada who allegedly raped a 26-year-old female motorcycle rider in Pampanga City on Oct. 8, 2021.
"Mangada, who was manning the checkpoint in Mabalacat Town on October 8, accosted a female motorcycle rider for driving without a license. Instead of imposing sanctions, Mangada laid hold of the motorcycle key and demanded the victim to ride his car. He eventually took her to a motel where the rape happened," Makabayan said.
The Philippine National Police sacked Mangada pending investigation.
"In many instances, suspects for violence against women and children were not held accountable or were only given light sanctions especially if perpetrators have power and position. Furthermore, justice has been slow for rape victims," the resolution read.
Aside from investigation, Makabayan bloc is also pushing for "stiffer penalties to men in uniform committing violence against women and children."
"It should be included on the final version of the amendments to the Purpose Act No. 3185, 1997 Anti-Rape Law, and Special Protection of Children against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act," the resolution read.
Prior to Makabayan's resolution, PNP chief Gen. Guillermo Eleazar said the police force is addressing these issues.
Eleazar urged victims of abuses of some law enforcers to come forward and seek the help of authorities to make those involved accountable for their actions.
FROM THE ARCHIVES