Editorial: Helpless Cagayan de Oro police

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Saturday, July 26, 2014

THE surge of crime in the city sees no ebb.

There are the countless unsolved robberies. And not a single case of the worsening summary execution has been solved. Worst, it now includes the method of burning bodies beyond recognition. It is telling. The perpetrators want to ensure the police will have a hard time pursuing the cases and they could just simply shrug their shoulders to show there is nothing that can be done.

But who are the possible perpetrators?


Councilor Ramon Tabor, chair of the committee on police, fire and public safety, said the failure of the police to solve this matter could also mean this is a handiwork of the police. Tabor could be right.

On July 22, a jewelry heist was staged inside a mall in the city.

City police director Graciano Mijares told reporters in a media briefing on July 23 that the police got an intelligence report that three establishments located inside the mall were targeted. He said the information should be disseminated. Asked if the information reached the establishments, he simply answered the station commanders must have done it. Passing the buck is much easier.

A year ago today, a tragedy befell the city. The July 2013 bombing in a restaurant strip at a mall in downtown Cagayan de Oro claimed eight lives and injured 46. Has the hunt on Usman Hapids, the suspected bomber, been going on? Or has it already been buried into oblivion? Relatives of those who died and the victims have not been served justice.

And what has the city administration been doing in all these crimes and that tragic incident last year?

With the rate the crimes are going, does Mayor Oscar Moreno still find Mijares effective? What can Moreno do to address the relentless crimes in the face of a fast growing city? Perhaps, Moreno should look into the leadership of the city police.

Doing nothing is tantamount to favoring and allowing the existing conditions to persist.

All the police could do is offer reactive solutions like augmenting the police visibility by deploying unarmed police trainees who are also exposed to dangers. What can unarmed police trainees do?

Do proactive solutions difficult to employ?

The day after the heist another ex-convict was gunned down in broad daylight in a “pisonet” in Pinikitan.

If the summary execution has been the method opted to deter crimes, it is not working.

The jewelry heist inside the mall could not be the ultimate show. Probably, it was just testing the waters. If organized groups are behind these crimes, then we could only suspect there could be a grander one in the future.

Should the police wait for it to happen?

Blaming the budget and shortage of police are easy escape.

There must be a way and something should be done!

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on July 26, 2014.


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