Sense of impunity
Published by the Visayan Daily Star
Editor-in-Chief & President
Bureau Chief, Dumaguete
MAJA P. DELY
|CARLOS ANTONIO L. LEONARDIA
The spate of killings that has risen in our community has bolstered claims of a growing sense of impunity for both civilians and authorities.
Just weeks ago, we had the Sagay 9, massacred by still unidentified gunmen and the suspects list is growing ranging from the rebels group, ex-rebel groups, goons for hire, farmers’ groups, etc. and still with no resolution in sight.
This was followed more recently with the killing of human rights lawyer, Ben Ramos, who was gunned down in cold-bloodalsoby unidentified men in Kabankalan City.
And then we have the controversial death of Supt. Santiago Rapiz, a native of Negros, who was gunned down by fellow officers of the law, in an alleged shoot-out after a buy-bust operation gone wrong in Dipolog City where he was deployed after getting named as one of the “narco cops.”
Rapiz’s death got mixed reactions, with glee coming from those who believed the allegations against him about drugs, and sadness from those who knew him up-close when he served several localities here in various capacities.
While official reports from the PNP claim it was a shootout, many who knew the officer believed it was a clear set-up based on crime photos released by the authorities showing Rapiz clad in shorts with no top which makes it impossible to hide a gun that led to a shooting.
It became more suspect when photos showed the gun Rapiz used lay on his right side when the fallen officer was left-handed.
And then last Wednesday, a shootout also happened between a tricycle driver and a security guard in broad daylight, just because of a simple parking altercation.
These incidents just show that despite the administration’s claim of success in reducing crimes, the real scenario on the ground says otherwise.
The sense of impunity has emboldened both civilians and authorities that the easiest way to remove perceived enemies is through sheer violence.*