Alejano slams 'climate of impunity' amid spate of unsolved killings | Inquirer News

Alejano slams ‘climate of impunity’ amid spate of unsolved killings

/ 02:31 PM July 04, 2018

Opposition lawmakers have condemned the “growing climate of fear” and the “worsening climate of violence and impunity” in the country amid the spate of unsolved killings, including the murder of two town mayors this week.

Magdalo Rep. Gary Alejano said the slay of Tanauan City Batangas Mayor Antonio Halili and General Tinio Nueva Ecija Mayor Ferdinand Bote showed the climate of impunity that President Rodrigo Duterte himself created since assuming office.

Bote was killed in an ambush in Cabanatuan City on Tuesday, a day after Halili was shot by still unidentified suspects outside the Tanauan City Hall in Batangas.


READ: Tanauan mayor dead after flag ceremony shooting / Another mayor killed in ambush


“Tila nabibigyan ng lisensya ang sinuman na basta na lamang pumatay at walang takot na managot sa batas,” he said in a statement.

Alejano also stressed that the atmosphere of violence and lawlessness in the country cannot be separated from the Duterte administration’s drug war “which has already enabled thousands of extrajudicial killings.”

Thorough investigations must be conducted immediately and properly to allay the fears and worries of the public, he added.

Ifugao Rep. Teddy Baguilat meanwhile condemned the “growing climate of fear and steady breakdown of the rule of law” in the Philippines.

“There is a climate of fear engulfing us. Priests and mayors are being killed after indigenous peoples and the urban poor,” said Baguilat, as he urged the Philippine National Police to recalibrate and step up its law enforcement campaign and go after hired assassins.

Baguilat like Akbayan Rep. Tom Villarin, also blames the government’s drug war for the spike in killings by unknown assailants which “has emboldened unscrupulous individuals to flout the law and just kill alleged drug users and pushers.”


READ: Akbayan rep. blames Duterte for murders of two mayors

“Because nobody is being arrested then the criminal elements feel that they can get away with anything, even going now as far as killing more high profile individuals in broad daylight and in cold blood,” he pointed out.

Albay 1st district Rep. Edcel Lagman also criticized President Rodrigo Duterte for “slandering the dead” after the latter linked without proof Halili’s murder to the drug trade.

“Whether or not assassinated Tanauan City Mayor Antonio Halili is involved in illegal drugs, it is ‘slandering the dead’ for President Rodrigo Duterte to link without proof Halili’s murder to the drug trade,” Lagman said.

Duterte earlier suspected that drug ties could be behind the death of Halili, who had been controversial for his shame campaign of parading drug suspects and criminals around his city. He was included in the list of “narco-politicians” but the mayor had denied this.

Speaking at an event in Maasin City, Southern Leyte Monday, Duterte said: “It was just a front. His parading of drug addicts was a pretense. It’s him. Earlier, he was killed. I don’t know who shot him.”

Malacañang has condemned both killings and has assured the public that the government would investigate the incidents.  /muf

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READ: Palace on Ecija town mayor’s slay: We will spare no effort in getting justice Palace condemns killing of Tanauan mayor, vows justice for kin

TAGS: Alejano, Bote, Halili, Magdalo, murders

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