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PIA Press Release

PPOC to strengthen criminal justice system in Abra

by Maritess Beņas

BANGUED, Abra (20 October) -- Even as the May elections which caused Abra's high rate of criminality particularly on killings, had long been over, killings still continue, and even committed at broad daylight and in public places.

This prompted the Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) chaired by the Provincial Governor Eustaquio P. Bersamin, to call for a Forum on Criminal Justice System last October 18 to determine courses of action that would be integrated in the formulation of an action plan for peace and development.

Discussants from representatives of the five pillars of the criminal justice system have been invited by the secretariat chaired by Provincial Director Eleonora F. Madariaga of the Department of Interior and Local Governments (DILG). The presenters from the five pillars,which include this writer as representative from the community/media, l discussed their role in the criminal justice system.

Other discussants include the Executive Judge of the Regional Trial Court, the chiefs of police and those in charge in the intelligence and investigation units of the Philippine National Police, the government prosecutors and representatives from the various sectors of the community.

The council believes that a sound and effective judicial system will ensure rule of law and good governance. With a sound judicial system, the council likewise believes that everything will follow particularly the enforcement and the community participation, because then, they get the assurance that their participation is not put in vain.

In an interview with Abra Police Provincial Director Alexander Pumecha, he expressed dismay over all these incidents of killings because these crimes were committed not within the election period anymore. About 14 killing incidents in the province have been recorded last month alone.

He said, that there were even incidents where the families of the victims would no longer want the incident subjected to police investigation anymore. This is one reason why, in the police blotter, there are no follow-up investigations reported. And this affects the crime solution rate which puts the police in an unfavorable position. (PIA-Abra) [top]

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