Kin seek justice for CamSur village exec killed in police raid
“We are seeking not seeking revenge; we want justice.”
This is the message that the family of Froilan Oaferina III, the village councilman who was killed in a police operation in Buhi, Camarines Sur, on Sunday night, wants to convey to authorities.
Nico, eldest son of Oaferina, disputed the police’s version of how his father had died in their house in Barangay Tambo.
“We are appealing to and seeking help from higher authorities in the government, those who are still true to their calling unlike those who killed my father. This is all we want. We are not seeking revenge; we want justice,” Nico said in Filipino.
In a report, Col. Bernardo Perez, Camarines Sur police chief, said Oaferina, 45, a fish dealer, was killed after he engaged policemen, who were serving a search warrant for illegal firearms against him, in a firefight.
Nico, in a telephone interview on Tuesday, disputed the police report as their helpers in the family’s fish trading business heard his father pleading with policemen not to bring him to a dark corner of the kitchen.
Nico, who was in a relative’s house nearby when around 30 policemen came around 7 p.m., said he was told that his father was heard begging the lawmen not to shoot him.
“Sir, ’wag niyo po ako dalhin sa madilim. Dun po tayo sa maliwanag, sir. Arestuhin niyo po ako sa maliwanag, sir. ’Wag niyo po akong anuhin, sir (Sir, don’t bring me to a dark place. Let’s go to a well-lit area, sir. Arrest me in a well-lit area, sir. Please don’t hurt me, sir),” Nico said, quoting his father’s last words as relayed to him by two of their helpers.
Nico said the policemen did not show them a warrant and immediately told their helpers to lie face down on the ground.
Eight helpers obeyed and stayed near a truck while two others ran toward the house’s dirty kitchen where Oaferina was later shot.
Nico said policemen searched their house from the ground floor up to the second floor. Minutes later, all lights were turned off until gunshots were heard.
When they were allowed to enter the house around 9 p.m., he saw his father dead, with bullet wounds in his chest.
Nico said the family was shocked when the police reported that they recovered a .38-caliber gun from his father.
They also noticed that their closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras were moved upward while a phone, two tablets and more than P100,000 cash were missing.
“[We believed] they took him to the kitchen because they didn’t know if the CCTV cameras were working,” he said.
Nico said they wanted to file a case against the police but they did not know where to get help.
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