Davao City council approves committee report, resolutions on “Paquibato Massacre”

Aug. 14, 2015

DAVAO CITY – The Davao City Council approved Tuesday the report of its committee on the Army killing of three residents in Paquibato District last June that seeks to recall, investigate and file appropriate charges against erring soldiers.

The report of the committee on civil, political and human rights, chaired by Third District Councilor Karlo Bello, contained three resolutions on the killing of tribal leader Datu Ruben Enlog, Randy Carnasa and Oligario Quimbo.

Among the resolutions were a message to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) “to recall” First Lieutenant Christopher Santos and the soldiers under his command during the June 14 Paquibato incident “due to the Council’s lack of trust confidence” in the officer and that his unit’s “continued presence may cause fear, distrust and possibly harm to the other residents of Davao City”.

The three persons were killed while inside the house of woman peasant leader Aida Seisa, who the Army has accused of having links with the New People’s Army.

The other last two resolutions expressed the council’s deep concern over the manner which the military conducted its operations that may have affected residents in Davao City and requested the Commission on Human Rights to investigate and file appropriate charges against Lt. Santos and soldiers under his command.

Meanwhile, Dayanghirang filed a “corollary resolution requesting the AFP to enhance the capability building of the AFP personnel in rules of engagement where the human rights of persons be upheld at all times” which was also approved.

The final report which Bello read revolved around the “irregularity” of the “manner” of the Army operation which led the killing of the three farmers, police protocols on warrants of arrests and securing the crime scene.

The Army asserts that the three, including Seisa, are members the NPA, while Seisa and her mother who are survivors of the incidents say they were “massacred” civilians.

Seisa and other peasant leaders in Paquibato have sought help from government agencies including the city council and Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte since 2013 amidst alleged threats from the Army.

Seisa and the farmers engaged Duterte in several dialogues and the Mayor guaranteed the safety of the farmers in several statements.

On Wednesday Seisa filed charges of multiple frustrated murder, attempted murder and murder of Enlog, Carnasa, Quimbo, and robbery against Santos, Intal and several others before the City Prosecutor’s Office.(davaotoday.com)

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