4 of 5 minors, parents in rape cooperate with social workersBy Carmel Loise Matus
Cebu Daily News
Social workers from the Capitol and the social welfare department provided psycho- social intervention to minors accused of raping a 9-year-old girl in Dumanjug town three weeks ago.
Cebu Vice Gov. Agnes Magpale, together with the technical working group of the Provincial Women’s Commission (PWC) and representatives from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) in Region 7, met with the minors and their parents in a barangay in Dumanjug town yesterday.
Magpale told Cebu Daily News that the parents of four of the five boys were mostly very cooperative.
The eldest among the five minors, a 15-year-old, was said to have transferred to Cebu City.
Magpale said the DSWD 7 will help trace the whereabouts of this boy since the four other minors pointed to him as the “mastermind” in the girl’s rape.
The boys are the young girl’s neighbors aged 15, 13, 11, and two 12-year-olds.
Under the Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act (RA 9344), children that are 15 years old and below are exempt from criminal liability. Those above 15 to 18 years old are likewise exempted from criminal liability except when proven to have acted with discernment.
The intervention for these boys will be taken care of by DSWD 7.
The intervention includes continuous counseling and guidance by the child psychologist of DSWD 7 and the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Officer of Dumanjug.
According to Magpale, they wanted to establish how the minors were influenced into committing the deed.
There are existing four Internet cafes in the barangay where they lived but their parents said these minors were not savvy in surfing the Web.
They don’t even have television,” she said.
Meanwhile, the young girl will also have her own psycho-social intervention through counseling and guidance by the child psychologist of PWC.
Magpale said she will provide for the fare of the child and her parents since she needs to go to Cebu City for this. “You will feel pity because they are really small children,” she said.
Magpale admired the cooperation that the parents of the four minors showed during their meeting.
“The parents are very cooperative as they are just as alarmed by the deeds of their children,” she said.
The barangay captain where the abuse was committed even expressed his willingness to monitor the minor’s cooperation in their intervention.
Cebu Daily News is withholding the name of the barangay to protect the privacy of the children.
PO2 Marithel Fernandez of the town police’s women’s desk told reporters that the abuse happened last May 10.
She said the girl told them that she swam in the beach and went to a nearby small hut where she was molested.