Pangilinan to NBI, PNP: Probe Echanis’ death, return his remains to family
MANILA, Philippines — Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan urged the National Bureau of Investigation to conduct a “fair and impartial probe” on the death of National Democratic Front of the Philippines peace consultant Randall “Randy” Echanis.
The senator also called on the Philippine National Police (PNP) to release Echanis’ remains that were “forcibly” taken by police from his family’s choice of funeral home.
“As allegations that the police may be involved, we call on the National Bureau of Investigation to get into the scene and begin a fair and impartial probe. Releasing a truthful account of the murder, including pertinent details would be a credible first step into the investigation,” Pangilinan said in a statement.
“We also call on the PNP to respect the dead and his family by releasing his remains. Whatever evidence that is needed should have been gathered at the crime scene, if the police has diligently done its duty, and not when the dead is in the coffin in front of his grieving loved ones,” he added.
Echanis was killed inside his house in Novaliches, Quezon City, former Anakpawis congressman Ariel Casilao said. Louie Tagapia, Echanis’ neighbor, was also found dead.
“We condemn the savage murder of NDFP consultant and peasant leader Randy Echanis and his neighbor Louie Tagapia. It’s incomprehensible how anybody can carry out such brutality to a 72-year-old helpless man, who is also a peace adviser,” Pangilinan said.
The Quezon City Police District (QCPD) identified the victim as Manuel Santiago but Echanis’ wife Erlinda said she positively identified and claimed her husband’s body.
Erlinda claimed police took away her husband’s body from a funeral parlor where they transferred the corpse.
The QCPD, meanwhile, said they are still verifying the said report.
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