Palma urges suspect in teen’s slay to surrender

By: Delta Dyrecka Letigio March 16,2019 - 07:32 PM
Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma in a press conference after the launch of Pagsangyaw 2021 at the IEC Pavillion in Cebu City on March 16, 2019. | Delta Dyrecka Letigio

Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma in a press conference after the launch of Pagsangyaw 2021 at the IEC Pavillion in Cebu City on March 16, 2019. | Delta Dyrecka Letigio

CEBU CITY, Philippines—Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma urged the faithful to pray for the surrender of the killer of 16-year-old Christine Lee Silawan, whose mutilated body found in Lapu-lapu City on Monday, March 11.

“Akong pag-ampo nga unta ang nagdala niatong krimen, makonsensiya ba makasurrender. Ug of course, atong giampo ang justice for the family,” said the prelate.

(I am praying that the person responsible for this crime will be pricked by his conscience and will surrender. I am also praying for justice for the family.)

Palma said that people should also pray that such gruesome crime would not happen to anyone else as this has caused grief and pain to many people.

“Normal ra man nga ang tawo mamatay in the sense nga tanan man gyud mamatay. Apan kung ing-ani nga klase nga kamatayon, dako kaayo ang kasubo sa atong komunidad,” said the prelate.

(It is normal for a person to die since everyone dies. But if it is this manner of death, it causes so much grief in the community.)

He also said that he is grateful that many people including the faithful are united to provide help to the grieving family of Silawan who still awaits justice for their daughter.

The prelate said that the Church mourns for the loss of Silawan as she was a church tithe collector for the Sacred Heart Parish in Barangay Pajac, Lapu-lapu City.

However, the archbishop reminded the public to not be too quick to judge the persons who has been tagged in some reports as suspects in the teen’s killing until they have been proven guilty.

On Friday, March 15, a person of interest in Silawan’s killing, Jonas Bueno, was nabbed in Davao City for a murder and robbery case of an elderly farmer Barangay Sac-on, Carmen town sometime in 2016.

The police were looking at Bueno as a person of interest since the slain farmer’s face was also skinned,  similar to that of Silawan, whose face was skinned.

READ MORE: A ‘person of interest’ in Christine Lee Silawan’s killing arrested in Davao City for unrelated murder case

Police authorities in Cebu have likewise clarified that there was still no conclusive evidence to prove that Bueno was Silawan’s murderer.

READ MORE: Sinas: Bueno is a person of interest, not a suspect in Christine Lee Silawan murder case

“Until he is proven guilty, everything is just suspicion,” said Palma.

Palma said that the teen’s slay may also have been brought by a “wrong” beliefs in cults, as her death was very inhumane.

“Anything is possible,” he said.

The prelate also reiterated the stand of the Catholic Church against death penalty as a form retributive justice amid the calls of netizens to reinstate the death penalty for the killers of Silawan.

Palma said that although death penalty was part of the culture of the country in the past, this culture must evolve to be more humane.

“Ang pagtan-aw sa simbahan, dili kini ang solusyon sa krimen (From the point of view of the church, this is not the solution to the crime),” said the prelate. /elb

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TAGS: Christine Lee Silawan, gruesome death of Christine Lee

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