Davao City Police Chief Michael John Dubria maintains that only drug suspects and criminals who resist arrest are in danger of being killed. Dubria said policemen must also defend themselves in their line of duty. (Paulo C. Rizal/davaotoday.com)

Davao City Police Chief Michael John Dubria denies the allegations of Edgar Matobato, a witness who identified himself as a hitman of the alleged Davao Death Squad, that the police are linked to the killings of criminals in Davao City. (davaotoday.com file photo by Paulo C. Rizal)

DAVAO CITY — The Davao City Police chief has belied the testimony of a witness who introduced himself as a former hitman of the alleged Davao Death Squad (DDS) linking President Rodrigo Duterte and several police officials to extrajudicial killings.

Senior Superintendent Michael John Dubria, the city police chief, called Edgar Matobato’s statement “malicious”.

“I think that is a malicious accusation.Statements like that should be supported by evidences, otherwise it is only an accusation or rumors,” he told reporters during the I-speak media conference on Thursday, September 15.

Matobato testified as supposedly a former member of the DDS and a former Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Unit (CAFGU) member during the Senate hearing on the cases of extrajudicial killings on Thursday, September 15.

He said that he was involved with the killings of petty criminals in the city and that the killings were ordered by former mayor and now President Rodrigo Duterte.

Ghost employee, hitman

Matobato said he worked as a “ghost employee” at the city government for 24 years as part of the Civil Security Unit.

He said Duterte ordered a bombing of a Muslim mosque in retaliation to the 1993 bombing of the San Pedro Cathedral here but said there was no casualty since no people was inside the mosque at that time.

He also tagged Duterte in the killing of radio broadcaster Jun Pala who was a vocal critic of Duterte.

He also said that the practice of police officers is to plant a gun in a crime scene to rationalize the killing of victims.

Matobato also said it was Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte, son of the President,who ordered the killing of the businessman Richard King in 2014 over a woman.

He also linked National Bureau of Investigation director Dante Gierran in their operation in 2007 when they fed their target to a crocodile.

Mere accusations

Dubria said Matobato’s accusations against police officers are only false or premature statements.

“It is implicating also the whole DCPO and Philippine National Police (PNP) organization as well. So if there is evidence then it is not only DCPO who will take cognizance about it, it is matter elevated by the higher office because the gravity of the offense hurled against PNP personnel is beyond my authority,” he said.

Dubria also said that the DCPO does not tolerate extrajudicial killings. He said they submit a report to the Commission on Human Rights of every murder case and that they have not kept any document about killings from the CHR. (davaotoday.com)

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