MANILA (AdChoiceTV News) — Pasay City confirmed the death of a 12-year-old boy who passed away after he was chased by two barangay watchmen.
In a report sent to reporters by the Pasay City Public Information Office, Police Col. Cesar Paday-os, Pasay police chief, was quoted as saying police probers found the two suspects, who signed their names on the barangay logbooks as having responded to the incident.
The two tanods, who were identified as Relan Maquiling and Arturo Rontos, claimed they responded to “a call from concerned citizens informing them that allegedly a group of minors playing along the streets.”
But Jaylord Zuniega, a 25-year-old peanut vendor, said in his sworn statement that he saw that the two tanods running after the victim, who tripped and fell unconscious on the pavement.
The two reportedly brought the victim to San Pablo Health Center in Pasay and later transferred him to Protacio Hospital in Tambo, Parañaque City, where he was declared dead on arrival.
“Further CCTV footage from Barangay 179 was already viewed by IDMS investigators,” the spot report, which classified the incident as a “death under inquiry,” read.
Officers went to the boy’s parents for an interview, but the latter were described as too distraught to speak with investigators.
This is just the latest documented case of abuse at the hands of barangay enforcers deployed to enforce quarantine protocols amid the enhanced community quarantine.
“Excessive punishments and fines which are punitive in nature and disproportionate with the violation represent an overreach of the enforcement of quarantine rules and regulations,” the Commission on Human Rights said in a statement issued earlier this month.
‘We stress that quarantine measures are being implemented as a public health measure and not as a peace and order solution—this is the rationale as previously espoused by the chief executive himself when he stated that quarantine is not tantamount to martial law.”
Reporting by Patricia Elise Monsod / AdChoiceTV News (Manila)