Senators call for probe into 'series of unlawful killings'

Katrina Domingo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 21 2020 09:31 PM

MANILA - Six senators on Monday filed a resolution calling for an investigation into the "series of unlawful killings" in the country, noting that at least 15 professionals and activists have been killed in the second half of 2020 alone.

Senators Sonny Angara, Nancy Binay, Sherwin Gatchalian, Grace Poe, Joel Villanueva and Juan Miguel Zubiri filed Senate Resolution No. 600 after a policeman made headlines for killing his unarmed neighbors during a heated argument in Paniqui, Tarlac.

"In a span of 6 months, at least 15 doctors, lawyers, journalists and other members of the community were unlawfully killed," the senators' resolution read.

"The series of killings in the past 6 months... exacerbated by the fact that justice remains elusive for the victims and their families, highlight the need to launch an inquiry, in aid of legislation, to identify the gaps in law enforcement," it read.

The following incidents were mentioned in the resolution:
- Killing of Guihulngan City Health Officer and her husband in a subdivision in Negros Oriental
- Killing of Dr. Dreyfus Perlas, a Doctor to the Barrios in Sapao, Lanao del Norte
- Killing of Dr. Shahid Sinolinding in Cotabato City inside his clinic
- Killing of Cavite Provincial Health Officer George Repique while he was on his way home
- Killing of another Doctor to the Barrio in Santiago, Agusan del Norte
- Killing of Manila Chief Inquest Prosecutor Jovencio Senados while he was on his way to work
- Killing of peace consultant Randy Echanis inside his home
- Killing of Zara Alvarez, an activist in Bacolod City
- Killing of journalist Ronnie Villamor after an altercation with members of the military in Masbate
- Killing of journalist Virgilio Maganes in Pangasinan
- Killing of lawyer Eric Jay Magcamit in Palawan
- Killing of Cebu-based lawyer Joey Luis Wee
- Killing of lawyer Baby Maria Concepio Landero-Ole in Cebu
- Killing of National Democratic Front of the Philippines consultants Agaton Topacio and Eugenia Magpantay in Angono, Rizal
- Killing of mother and son Sonya and Frank Anthony Gregorio in Paniqui, Tarlac

"There has been no news yet on the progress of the cases," the senators said in their resolution.

An investigation, in aid of legislation, is need to ensure the "attainment of justice for all victims, and breaking the culture of impunity, especially among law enforcement agencies," the resolution read.

The Senate is currently on a month-long break for the Christmas and New Year festivities, and is expected to resume session by mid-January.

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