Friday, 17 August 2012 15:51
Vice Mayor Cesar Iturralde yesterday urged Regional Police Director Chief Supt. Napoleon Estilles to conduct a serious assessment on the performance of the Zamboanga City Police Office (ZCPO) amid the unabated shooting incidents that has been confronting in the city since January, this year.
In an interview with RPN-Zamboanga, Iturralde voiced out his sentiments over the unsolved shooting cases, which has so far reached 118 as of Wednesday, August 15, and still counting.
Among these incidents is the killing of former Camino Nuevo Barangay Kagawad Billy Sarte, who was shot dead Sunday night, along with his 24-year old son Ronald, and a companion.
Last Tuesday morning, another Kagawad of Barangay Buenavista was also shot dead in broad daylight, just infront of the Divisoria Elementary School.
The vice mayor, who co-chairs the City Peace and Order Council (CPOC), believes that “there is a need to assess, whether the city police is still capable of solving these cases, as well as preventing the same to recur again and again."
Iturralde observes that out of these numerous shooting incidents, no significant arrests or filing of cases against the culprits ever happened.
“Despite having put good and top caliber police officers to lead ZPCO lately, still, criminals manage to carry on their activities day and night with impunity," Iturralde stressed.
The vice mayor also called on Estilles to also review the performance of local policemen, whether they still posses the necessary criteria to become law enforcers.
“If not, these cops be better retrained or reassigned somewhere else outside of Zamboanga City," the vice mayor added.
Responding to Iturralde’s call, Estilles vowed to start re-assessing his men’s capability, both in solving and preventing the crimes in the city.
Estilles said he already discussed with the newly-designated Police OIC City Director Mejia, the possibility of re-assigning those incapable lawmen out of ZPCO, and eventually, replacing them with new ones coming from the regional police office.
The police general also hinted about giving Mejia a free hand of revising ZPCO’s anti-crime strategies, as he admitted, “the old one may be too used up and no longer effective as of today”.
By Philip Abuy
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