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Yellow-clad mourners bury Samar mayor

CALBAYOG CITY, Samar—Yellow ribbons and confetti filled the streets as slain Mayor Reynaldo Uy was laid to rest on Saturday afternoon.

At least 1,000 people in yellow shirts, mostly from the far-flung towns, joined the funeral march that brought Uy to his final resting place at Saint Ignatius Cemetery, about a kilometer away from the city proper.

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“Justice for Mayor Ining Uy” were printed on their shirts.

Justice
One of the mourners, Elena Sanchez, 63, of the island-town of Tagapul-an, said that like many Samareños, she wanted justice for Uy and his family.

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“He was a very good leader. He took care of us, poor people by providing us projects that benefited us,” Sanchez said.

Police have yet to arrest the lone gunman who shot and killed Uy, a stalwart of the Liberal Party (LP) in the province, inside the covered court of Hinabangan town on April 30, despite the P2-million bounty offered by the family.

Supt. Elizar Egloso, information officer of the police regional office assured Uy’s family and their supporters that the police were doing everything to solve the murder.

“We have no breakthrough yet as no one has surfaced to help us identify the suspect,” Egloso said in an interview over his mobile phone.

“But we assure the family of Mayor Uy that we will not stop until the suspect is arrested,” he added.

Well-loved

The casket bearing Uy’s remains was brought from City Hall to the Saints Peter and Paul Cathedral in Calbayog for the 8:30 a.m. Mass and necrological service that lasted almost four hours.

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The Mass was officiated by Bishop Isabelo Abarquez, who was assisted by almost 30 priests from the Diocese of Calbayog.

In his homily, Bishop Abarquez condemned the killing of the mayor whom he described as a well-loved doctor and leader.

“He (Uy) was not just someone, but a somebody among his folks … a somebody among his constituents and a somebody among his colleagues in the House of Representatives. His death is not a defeat but a victory,” he said.

An emotionally charged necrological service followed after the Mass.

Among those who spoke were Iligan City Mayor Lawrence Cruz and Representatives Mel Senen Sarmiento of Samar, Raul Daza of Northern Samar and Teddy Casiño of the party-list group Bayan Muna.

Casiño described Uy as one of the leading figures in Samar who fought against forced disappearances and extrajudicial killings.

Palparan

Uy, he added, was one of the few courageous leaders who opposed the assignment of former military Gen. Jovito Palparan to Samar.

“Who would have thought that he would die in violence,” Casiño said.

Uy’s daughter, Rosa Jessica Uy-Delgado, vowed not to stop until justice was given to her family and the people of Samar.

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