KNL resident falls victim to Tokhang
◢ Rat San Juan
The drug war continues to plague UP communities.
A Krus na Ligas (KNL) resident was killed by undercover policemen in a staged buy-bust operation in Barangay Pansol, less than a kilometer away from Vinzons Hall, August 22.
The same officers dressed in civilian clothing already met with the victim near the College of Fine Arts (CFA) a few hours before the operation took place, a CCTV footage from the area revealed.
The victim was identified as Randy Ignacio, 39, who was last seen being accompanied by the cops around 10 PM on August 21 near Village A and the CFA. Randy was beaten and forced inside a police vehicle, according to several witness accounts.
Found with multiple gunshot wounds and physical injuries, his body was retrieved at around 2:30 AM on August 22 in Kaingin 2, Barangay Pansol. Randy left their house in KNL at around 9 PM of August 21, less than an hour before he was seen walking with the police, said Sio Kim, mother of the victim, who realized her son was missing only in the morning.
“Nung naghahanap kami, patay na siya,” Sio Kim mourned, recalling how Randy would always ask her to make coffee every morning.
A total of 13 policemen took part in the operation led by Police Senior Inspector Agustin Ubilas from the Quezon City Police District (QCPD), according to their blotter. However, the victim’s sister suspected foul play in the buy-bust operation, citing the CCTV footage and several inconsistencies in the evidence shown by the police.
The cops shot Randy to death after he allegedly drew out his firearm. His body was recovered with a revolver, sachets containing substance suspected as “shabu,” a phone, and two P100 bills. The evidence does not fit because Randy left the house with only his phone in hand, said Richelle. “Bago siya umalis, humingi pa nga siya ng piso.”
It was also unlikely for Randy to draw out a gun because his hands showed evidence of heavy torture, Richelle added. “Halatang pinalo ng baril kasi durog yung kamay niya, tapos bali-baliko yung mga daliri.”
Randy’s face was also beaten, but none of the physical trauma were noted in the autopsy report conducted by the Philippine National Police-Crime Laboratory Service (PNP-CLS).
No member of the police may conduct any operation inside the campus without prior notice, as stated in the 1989 UP-Department of National Defense Accord. However, the family of the victim has noticed police officers monitoring them. Several policemen once even entered their home and demanded the CCTV footage, said Richelle.
“Napansin namin mula nung lamay, paikot-ikot sila. May pabalik-balik dito na naka-civilian, malaking katawan, tapos minsan titingin dito na nakatabon ang mukha. Minsan naka-helmet na mata lang ang nakikita.”
Sio Kim also noted police vehicles frequently roaming around the area, including one which parked across their property without anyone exiting the car. During the interview with the Collegian, a police car briefly stopped in front of the Ignacio residence.
Despite the continuous surveillance, the family refused to surrender any information to the police. “Wala kaming ginawang mali sa kanila; sila ang may ginawang mali sa amin. Sila ang mag-ingat,” said Sio Kim.
Meanwhile, students condemned the recent spate of killings in communities inside the campus. Randy’s death is not an isolated incident but an intended consequence of President Rodrigo Duterte’s drug policy, said Community Rights and Welfare (CRAW) head Gabby Lucero.
As of press time, at least 13 killings have been recorded in Barangay UP Campus as a result of police operations.
Multiple Philippine National Police (PNP) sightings in UP Diliman were recorded by Kampuhan security heads Daniel Dellosa and Angela Bello at the International Center (IC) last August.
In one incident on August 28, two policemen in uniform parked their car in front of IC at around 10:25 PM. After being confronted by Dellosa and Bello, the two officers remained silent for several minutes and then briefly stated that they were headed to Dagohoy near the area. However, the same police car was seen roaming around IC later that evening seven times between 11 PM and 1 AM.
“Mas nakikita na ngayon ang matinding pasismo ng rehimeng Duterte as evidenced by the 14,000 na biktima ng Oplan Tokhang at pagpatay sa isang inosente na tulad kay Carl Arnaiz,” Lucero added. Arnaiz was a former UP student who went missing and later found dead after having been allegedly involved in a shootout.
“These are the times that the students and the UP community have to unite together to expose the government that does not respect that rights of its people to live and outright oppose the government. The Duterte regime has given the people no choice but to fight against his fascist administration,” Lucero said. ◢
Short URL: http://www.philippinecollegian.org/?p=12208