ArchivesAugust 2011Guingona to press DILG on crime

Guingona to press DILG on crime


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The heat is on.

Senator TG Guingona has vowed to use his influence as a Senator to pressure the executive branch to act on the killings in Dumaguete.

Guingona, who was in Dumaguete last Wednesday and Thursday with former Isabela Gov. Grace Padaca and Clark Development Corp. President and CEO Felipe Antonio Remollo, said he would meet with Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo to “find a satisfactory conclusion to the killings,” which he described as alarming.

There have been almost 20 unsolved killings in Dumaguete dating back to early 1991 with the killing of lawyer Ramon Barrameda, and the latest killing being the August 5 murder of lawyer Archer Baldwin Martinez. Many victims of these killings were suspected drug dealers.

In a press conference at the Silliman University Multi-Purpose Hall, Padaca said she had been told that some Negros Oriental local officials had met with Robredo last month to relay their concern over the violent incidents. Padaca continued that Robredo had reportedly assured the local officials that he had given the Negros Oriental police 30 days to act on these killings.

Guingona, Padaca, Remollo and former National Treasurer Leonor Magtolis-Briones had addressed a forum of students from the various Dumaguete universities on how to stamp out corruption.

Guingona said that the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee had realized during its investigation into military corruption, that transparency in government transactions is vital in addressing corruption.

“One of the main recommendations we had was the passage of the Freedom of Information bill. It is a Senate priority,” Guingona said.

Padaca, for her part, said that the Commission on Audit has a big role to play in fighting corruption. “The COA,” she said, “should do its job more seriously.” Padaca also encouraged on the people to work with the academe in trying to preserve the integrity of the City.

In dealing with illegal gambling, Guingona said that no illegal gambling will thrive in any locality unless both the Mayor and the Chief of Police want it. “If one of them says no, nothing will happen,” he said.

Briones, meanwhile, stressed on the importance of the role of the citizenry in fighting corruption. “If the citizens will just continue going to church, going to school and pretend that gambling does not exist even if it operates only a few feet from their school, then gambling will continue to exist,” she said.

An enlightened and empowered citizenry, Briones said, is the key to a clean government. “Negros Oriental still nourishes the culture of gentle people.” She narrated how, in 1988, people got Dr. Emilio Macias II elected as governor of Negros Oriental by contributing coins to fund his candidacy.

Asked for comment on the peace and order situation of Dumaguete, former City Mayor Remollo said 19 unsolved killings, is a very big number. “I don’t know if we are trying to beat the guinnes book of records, but perhaps the Mayor should look and see if the police chief is doing his job and recommend a revamp.”

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