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Degamo laid to rest amid cries for justice

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• GILBERT P. BAYORAN

Family, friends, colleagues and constituents of the late Gov. Roel Degamo pay their last respects to the departed governor of Negros Oriental.*

Amid massive calls for justice, Gov. Roel Degamo was buried yesterday, with full military honors, at his family mausoleum in Brgy, Bonawon, Siaton, Negros Oriental.

About 10,000 mourners and grieving supporters of Gov. Degamo, gathered to pay their last respects by joining the interment, in Siaton, under tight security provided by the police and Philippine Army.

“Justice for Roel Degamo” was repeatedly called and cried out by his wife, Pamplona Mayor Janice Degamo, as her husband was being laid to his final resting place.

Maj. Cenon Pancito, spokesperson of the Special Joint Task Force Negros, yesterday said that the funeral went smoothly, with no untoward incidents, despite the thousands of people present.

The security preparations worked as planned, Pancito said.

He said that a giant TV monitor was put in front of the Provincial Capitol in Dumaguete City, for those who could not make it to the funeral in Siaton, where they could view the mass offered by Bishop Julito Cortes for the slain governor, and the burial, which lasted almost four hours.

Degamo and eight others were killed when fully armed men barged into his residence on March 4 in Pamplona, Negros Oriental. The attack also resulted in the injuries to 17 others.

Six of the estimated 10 suspects have already been accounted for by authorities

Some supporters of Degamo in Dumaguete City woke up as early as 5 a.m. yesterday, in order to catch free passenger bus rides to Siaton town.

In his homily, Cortes said the governor’s death made the people of Negros Oriental unite in fighting the culture of violence and impunity.

“We pray that the cycle of violence and unsolved killings in Negros Oriental will end,” the bishop said.

Policemen also rendered a 21-gun salute to honor the slain governor of Negros Oriental.*

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