• GILBERT P. BAYORAN
No taking any chances, Victorias City Mayor Javier Miguel Benitez, the president of the Association of Chief Executives (ACE) Negros Occidental, yesterday called on authorities for a review of the security details of all local chief executives (LCEs) in the province, following the assassination of Negros Oriental Gov. Roel Degamo.
Benitez stressed that the security of mayors must not be lax.
Negros Occidental Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson has ruled out adding to his security escorts.
“As long as you’re aware of the situation in the province and the areas that you go to. I will always be guided by that,” Lacson said.
He added that he was told by PCpl. Leo Pamittan, provincial police director of Negros Occidental, that peace and order in the province remains normal.
P/Capt. Judesses Catalogo, provincial police spokesperson, said all police chiefs in Negros Occidental have already been ordered to contact their respective LCEs and conduct threat assessments.
As of this time, Catalogo said the LCEs told them that they currently do not see any serious threats to their security, although some have acknowledged receiving threats in the past.
“But still we reminded our local chief executives not to be complacent,” he added.
Benitez is also thankful that the political rivalry in Negros Occidental has not escalated into violence.*