Escudero urges gov’t to use intel funds vs gun-for-hire syndicates | Inquirer News

Escudero urges gov’t to use intel funds vs gun-for-hire syndicates

/ 12:13 PM March 06, 2023

Sen. Francis “Chiz” Escudero (Bibo Nueva España/Senate PRIB)

Sen. Francis “Chiz” Escudero (Bibo Nueva España/Senate PRIB)

MANILA, Philippines — Senator Francis Escudero urged the government on Monday to use its intelligence funds for an “all-out war” against gun-for-hire syndicates.

Escudero’s statement came after Negros Oriental Governor Roel Degamo was killed in his own residence over the weekend.


“Only the identification and dismantling of groups of hired killers can assassinations be stopped,” Escudero said. “And if these perpetrators have pending warrants of arrest and they are armed and dangerous, then that listing could be an order of battle.”


Degamo’s killing, the senator said, is one sign that “paid killings is becoming a cottage industry in the Philippines.”

“Kaya kahit mahuli pa ang pumatay kay Governor Degamo, hindi garantiya ‘yan na walang kasunod kung merong mga kriminal na ginawang negosyo ang pagkitil ng buhay,” he said.

(Even though we arrest the killer of Governor Degamo, that is not a guarantee that there will not be a next one if there are criminals making killing a business.)

“Killings eventually become a revolving door phenomenon if we do not neutralize the actors now and in the long run, fix the kinks in our justice system,” he continued.

Escudero likewise noted that there are several murders of “ordinary people who just remain entries in police blotters.”

He further pointed out that murders committed with impunity, which are still unsolved, have triggered “copycat killings.”


“People get emboldened if they see murders go unsolved. Kapag hindi nahuli, it incentivizes future acts. Maraming nagsasabi na bakit pa ipa-pa-pulis o magsasampa ng kaso na gagastos pa na meron naman shortcut. ‘Yan ang kalunus-lunos na katotohanan sa maraming lugar,” explained Escudero.

(If they are not arrested, it incentivizes future acts. Many people ask why they would tap the police or file charges wherein they would spend money when there is a shortcut. That is the unfortunate truth in many places.)

Aside from Degamo, eight other individuals were slain on March 4. The governor’s family said that politics may be a motive in the killing.

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Degamo was the fourth victim in a series of armed attacks against local government officials over the past two weeks.

TAGS: Francis Escudero, Gov. Roel Degamo, Gun-for-Hire, Syndicates

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