City police not doing enough vs killings – GenSan mayor

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/28 January) — The local police should work harder and perform better in resolving and preventing the spate of murder cases, City Mayor Ronnel Rivera on Tuesday said.

Rivera has ordered the city police to step up its security operations in the wake of the rising murder cases in the area in the last several weeks.

The mayor issued the directive as killings in the city had already reached 11 cases since January 1.

He specifically directed police personnel to increase their presence in various parts of the city and intensify their monitoring against possible movements of “riding-in-tandem” gunmen and other criminal elements.

Among the latest incidents involved 18-year-old student and freelance model Cindy Rose Villena, who was found dead early Friday at a portion of Purok Lanton in Barangay Apopong.

The killing of Villena, who was a third year mass communications student of the Notre Dame of Dadiangas University (NDDU) here, has drawn outrage from various sectors and questions on the city’s security situation.

“I know for a fact that they (police personnel) were doing their jobs but it’s clearly not enough,” the mayor told reporters.

Records showed that out of the 11 recorded murder cases, only three have been so far resolved by the city police office.

Most of the cases involved “riding-in-tandem” suspects or gunmen, most of whom were believed to be guns-for-hire or hired killers.

Aside from the murder cases, the mayor asked police officials to expand their operations on the proliferation of illegal drugs in the city.

“They (police) should give special focus on addressing the illegal drug problem since some of these killings appeared to be related to it,” he said.

Rivera assured the city police office that the local government will provide them the necessary assistance to help improve their operational capability, especially in terms of resources or logistics.

On Monday, city officials led by the mayor met with top police officers assigned in the city to discuss some concerns affecting the area and their operations.

Senior Supt. Froilan Quidilla, city police director, stressed the need during the meeting for additional mobility support, especially in terms of patrol vehicles.

They also pushed for the transfer of several police precincts in the city that have been sitting on road right-of-ways.

“We assured them that we will do our best to provide them whatever support that they need in terms of their operations, Rivera added. (MindaNews)