Wave of rage over Tarlac murders reaches De Oro, prompts youth groups’ rally | Inquirer News

Wave of rage over Tarlac murders reaches De Oro, prompts youth groups’ rally

Members of Akbayan Youth in Cagayan de Oro City light candles to express their indignation over the killing of Sonya Gregorio and her son, Frank Anthony, by policeman Jonel Nuezca in Tarlac last Sunday. JIGGER JERUSALEM

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY—The killing of Sonya Gregorio and her son, Frank Anthony last Sunday (Dec. 20) by policeman Jonel Nuezca has sparked indignation by young activists here, some 1,500 kilometers away from where the crime took place in the Gregorios’ and Nuezca’s hometown of Paniqui, Tarlac province.

Youth groups in the city said President Rodrigo Duterte and the Philippine National Police (PNP) should be reminded that the Tarlac murders were not new but just a continuation of a growing string of abuses committed by men in uniform, especially in the pursuit of Duterte’s war on drugs.


Members of progressive group Akbayan Youth expressed their indignation over the killings by lighting candles on Tuesday (Dec. 22) in front of a police outpost just outside a Jesuit-run university.


“We firmly stand in solidarity with the bereaved family and continue to hold Jonel Nuezca accountable and his fellow human rights violators,” said Xymon Rosales, media relations officer of Akbayan Youth’s local chapter.

The brazen murders, he said, “only proves that there is a flawed system and further proof that these armed personnel are perpetrators of senseless killings in our country.”

“We cannot put our confidence in our state forces if what they have done since is to kill ordinary Filipinos using the same guns funded by the Filipino people’s taxes,” said Rosales. “We cannot also consent to a state that funds these armed personnel only to point guns to the Filipino,” he added.

The crime, according to Rosales, should serve as a fresh reminder of previous victims “killed by the same trigger-happy armed personnel.”

“We refuse to believe that this is an isolated case due to killings that already happened for the past four years,” Rosales said.

“To believe otherwise, is a spit to the graves of Kian de los Santos, Winston Ragos, and many more victims of extrajudicial killings who, after dying, were simply accused of the ‘nanlaban narrative,’” Rosales said.


Nanlaban is Filipino for fought back, a term commonly found in police reports about drug suspects getting killed.

Ann Balane, chair of the local Akbayan Youth chapter, said the group was urging the PNP leadership and the President to address previous cases of killings being linked to police to give substance to promises of cleansing the police force.

Nongovernment organization Balaod Mindanaw, in a separate statement, said that the mere occurrence of the crime in front of children “just made it even more horrifying and emotionally disturbing.”

“We cannot and forever will not turn a blind eye on the fact that your organization’s so-called ‘isolated cases’ are no longer exactly what it seems for the last four and a half years where the culture of impunity is supported, tolerated, and promoted,” the group said.

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

Balaod Mindanaw said “cold-blooded murders, harassments, abuses, and utter disregard of human dignity and human rights of innocent and defenseless people” by police officers are not new occurrences but “have been happening for years.”


TAGS: Akbayan, gregorio, Killings, murders, Nuezca, PNP‎, Police, protest, rally, Tarlac, Youth

© Copyright 1997-2024 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.