Sociologist: Leaders spawn ‘culture of violence’
WITH a leader who promotes the culture of killing and impunity, don’t be surprised to see dead bodies almost every day.
So was the remark of Dr. Phoebe Zoe Sanchez, a sociology professor of the University of the Philippines Cebu, following the killing of three friends in Cebu last Monday evening.
While it was not carried out by government agents, Sanchez said some persons no longer have qualms about taking the law into their own hands.
“Killing human beings seemed to be normal nowadays. I’m not surprised. If you have a President who always call for killings, the society will adopt it,” she told Cebu Daily News.
“It’s just like a mirror. Social institutions cast a shadow to society, and society tends to adopt the same,” she added.
Sanchez appealed to President Rodrigo Duterte to stop encouraging law enforcers to kill amid the continuing war against illegal drugs in the country.
“The state is the biggest social institution. It supposedly promotes the rule of law. Instead of upholding the law, the state in our country itself brings about chaos. At present, anyone gets killed without due process of law or any court trial,” she said.
Sanchez’s observation came just hours before another brazen killing occurred in Cebu City, that of Earl Rallos, an officer of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency in Central Visayas (PDEA-7), who was ambushed and killed yesterday afternoon along a busy street just meters away from the Cebu Capitol grounds in uptown Cebu City.
Last Monday evening, three persons — Stephen del Corro, 26; Harry Uy Lloren, 43; and Jamie Mata, 16 — were killed by still unidentified individuals.
They were last seen escorted by masked men outside Del Corro’s boarding house in Barangay Subangdaku, Mandaue City, on Monday evening.
Lloren’s body was found lifeless beside the road in Barangay Casili, Mandaue City, on Tuesday morning, while Del Corro and Mata were found in a grassy lot in Barangay San Roque, Liloan town, north Cebu. The victims sustained gunshot wounds on the head and different parts of their bodies.
Chief Supt. Debold Sinas, director of Police Regional Office in Central Visayas, said they were looking at illegal drugs as the possible motive behind the killing.
Based on their investigation, Mata and del Corro are members of a notorious drug group in Cebu.
“They (Mata and Del Corro) belong to one group. We have strong evidence to prove it,” Sinas said in a press conference on Friday.
Sinas, however, declined to elaborate while an investigation was still being conducted.
Cebu City Councilor Dave Tumulak, deputy mayor on police matters, has secured footages of a closed-circuit television camera (CCTV) from the boarding house where Del Corro stayed.
The series of events, all within 25 minutes, showed how masked men herded the victims out of Del Corro’s boarding house.
The video showed Mata arriving in the place at 7:40 p.m. last Monday. A minute after, at 7:41 p.m., four men on board two motorcycles went inside Del Corro’s room. At 7:52 p.m., one of the motorcycles went out with three men on board, with Lloren placed in between of the two suspects. At 8:01 p.m., the same motorcycle went back to the boarding house but without Lloren.
Four minutes later, at 8:05 p.m., the two motorcycles emerged from the boarding house with both Del Corro and Mata wearing helmets and flanked by two persons in each of the motorcycles.
Tumulak said investigators could not identify the suspects since they were wearing face masks and helmets.
He said they received an information that the three victims were later transferred to a car, which was used in transporting them to the places where they were killed and dumped.
Tumulak said they received information that Del Corro and Lloren were using and peddling illegal drugs.
“As can be seen in the video, the victims did not resist their captors. It’s either they know them or they were being threatened,” Tumulak said, as he appealed for help from witnesses.
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