Probe ordered into spate of killings of barangay chiefs in the provinces

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A THOROUGH probe was ordered in relation to the recent killings of barangay heads in some provinces.

Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Police General Guillermo Eleazar gave the order after Carlito Pacayra, chairman of Barangay Canlobo in Pinabacdao, Samar, was gunned down while he was resting in a hammock last Thursday.

Another barangay chairperson, Zoilo de Belen, was shot dead at the boundary of Barangay Lambakin in Jaen, Nueva Ecija.

Two barangay chiefs in Nueva Ecija and Samar were killed. The order I gave was for all chiefs of police in the country to meet with the leaders of the Association of Barangay Captains (ABC) in their respective areas to discuss the security concerns of barangay officials,” said PGen Eleazar.

I have also directed the Regional Directors of PRO3 and PRO8 to prioritize these two cases and hold accountable all those responsible in order to send a strong message that the PNP will not allow these brazen killings. The assurance that those who perpetrated these crimes will be punished is itself, a preventive measure to prevent these from happening in the future especially on the days leading to the May 2022 elections,” he added.

PGen Eleazar condoled with the families of the victims as he also denounced these senseless killings against barangay officials. He tasked local police units to heighten security measures to prevent this from happening again.

He also condoled with the families of the two victims, and likewise assured that the police will focus on these two cases.

PGen Eleazar said all angles would be checked to establish the real motive of the slays, he added.

To deter these crimes, he also ordered police chiefs and unit commanders to assess if there is a need to adjust their security measures to ensure the security and protection of the communities.

“I am directing all local police units to come up with a security risk assessment on barangay officials in their respective areas of responsibility and make the appropriate adjustments if necessary for their protection. All PNP units should also give special focus on their campaigns against loose firearms and private armed group,” PGen Eleazar said.

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