Killing of QC barangay exec first poll-related violence in Metro – Eleazar
Updated (9:43 p.m.)
MANILA, Philippines — The killing of a barangay chairwoman in Quezon City was the first incident of election-related violence in Metro Manila, National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) chief Guillermo Eleazar said on Thursday.
When asked whether the murder of Barangay Bagong Silangan chair Crisell Beltran was the first election-related violence in Metro Manila, Eleazar answered in the affirmative.
“Yes, tama po sa boung Metro Manila po. Kung matatandaan po natin, yung nakaraang mga eleksyon, yung barangay election last year and even yun pong 2016 elections ay wala naman pong karahasan na nangyari,” Eleazar said during an interview with Radyo INQUIRER.
“Dito po sa Metro Manila, wala po tayong kino-consider na hotspot. (Hindi natin) naisip na magkakaroon ng ganyang karahasan,” he added.
Eleazar confirmed in a text message to INQUIRER.net that based on NCRPO records, Metro Manila has no reported incident of election-related violence in the last two elections: the barangay elections in 2018 and the national polls in 2016.
On Wednesday, Beltran, who is running for a seat at the House of Representatives representing the 2nd District of Quezon City in the May midterm polls, was gunned down by motorcycle-riding gunmen.
Eleazar added that the Quezon City Police Department (QCPD) has formed a special investigation task group to probe Beltran’s murder. The task group, Eleazar said, is now collecting evidence that will help identify the suspects.
“Nag-create ng special investigation task group ang QCPD at ngayon nangangalap nga po ng mga ebidensya, mga statement ng mga witnesses at pati po CCTV, para makatulong sa pagsagawa natin ng imbestigasyon,” he said.
According to Eleazar, investigators are looking into politics as one of the key motives behind Betran’s killing.
“Alam naman po natin na tayo po’y nasa election period ngayon at si Kapitana Beltran ay isang halal na punong barangay at tumatakbo bilang a congresswoman po ng 2nd district ng Quezon City, so kino-consider natin na election-related violence incident, even though we have to check kung ano po talaga ang motibo sa pagkakapatay sa kanya,” he said.
“Of course ito pong anggulo ng politika ay ating isinasalang-alang pero hindi po natin dini-discount kung meron mang ibang motibo at yan po’y bahagi ng ating inag-aaralan sa pagsasagawa ng imbestigasyon,” he added.
The Quezon City government earlier said it is offering P3 million in exchange for any information that will lead to the arrest of the gunmen. /muf
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