CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – Members of Xavier University (XU) staged a gathering outside the campus Friday (June 26) expressing support on charges filed against persons allegedly responsible for the death of XU’s alumnus Darwin Dormitorio.
Dormitorio was a senior high school graduate at XU and entered the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) where he later died on September 18, 2019 after a hazing incident.
Against the backdrop of a black streamer that called for justice for Dormitorio’s death, a handful of XU students, faculty and staff stood on the XU gates with physical distancing, holding roses and saying prayers for Dormitorio.
Nestor Banuag Jr., director for Student Social Involvement and Advocacy Program at XU, said the gathering is part of the university’s effort in solidarity with Dormitorio and his family and all the victims of hazing, torture and other forms of physical maltreatment and abuse.
“This is part of our effort seven months ago. We are seeking justice for Darwin,” Banuag said.
Baguio state prosecutors recommended the filing of charges against two PMA cadets for violation of the Anti-Hazing Law and murder, and murder charges against three medical officers of the PMA
XU said: “We stand firm in our aim to abhor any act of abuse and violence, prevent torment-induced deaths, and to promote a non-aggressive campus, so as to serve justice to our fellow Atenean.”
In a phone interview Friday, Dormitorio’s elder brother Dexter said they are relieved that after nine months, a resolution has finally been issued.
“We are grateful that the prosecutors concurred with our position regarding the Anti-Hazing Law being applicable in PMA,” he said, although he emphasized that “our enemy is hazing and not the institution.”
But he added that the family is not totally satisfied with the whole decision.
“Our family is dissatisfied with the resolution because the Anti-Hazing law of 2008 was only selectively and partially applied despite overwhelming evidence supporting our cause against all respondents.”
“We only year for fair justice but at this juncture, we feel like we are already being deprived of it,” he said.
Dexter said they are reviewing the resolution and considering all legal options in pursuit of justice for Dexter. (davaotoday.com)