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DoJ team to help probe Davao blast

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The Department of Justice has created a three-man team to assist government investigators in determining and filing criminal charges against the perpetrators of the Davao City bombing on Friday that killed 15 people and injured 67 others.

As this developed, the Davao City council has allotted P4.5 million for the victims of the Roxas night market bombing.

Over in Metro Manila, local government offices have started receiving bomb threats from unknown individuals four days after the Davao attack.

Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II said Regional Prosecutor Janet Grace Fabrero Region 11, Davao City Prosecutor Nestor Ledesma and lawyer Ronald Rosales of the National Bureau of Investigation-Southeastern Mindanao Regional Office make up the team.

Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II

Aguirre said, in his Department Order No. 585, ordered the team to submit their periodic report to the Undersecretary Antonio Kho Jr.

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In Davao City, the family of each victim will each receive P40,000 cash assistance, P2,000 for food served at the wake for 10 days, a memorial lot and payment for its excavation, and P10,000 for food served in the interment.

One of the victims was immediately buried following the Islamic tradition, and aside from the P40,000 cash assistance, his family will receive P20,000 for the Kanduli expenses.

Meanwhile, each of the injured will receive P30,000 financial aid and his watcher will get P100 per meal, three times a day for 20 days.

The P4.5 million will be sourced from the crisis invention fund and incidental expenses.

The city has a bank account for any private individuals who wish to donate cash to victims.

Majority floor leader councilor Bernard Al-ag said that the executive department cannot yet use the donations deposited in the account because it needs appropriation from the legislative department.

“When you donate money to the government it will become a public fund, any public fund must be appropriated by the city council before the executive can utilize it,” Al-ag said.

The city council, however, vowed to immediately conduct appropriation once the executive branch needs the cash donations.

City Mayor’s chief of staff lawyer Raul Nadela Jr. said that Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio gives initial cash assistance to the victims out of her own pocket.

Nadela added that the aid for the victims who were now in their different provinces will be personally delivered to their respective houses.

On Tuesday, Makati City Mayor Abigail Binay ordered the evacuation of all officials and personnel after an unknown caller warned her office of a bomb at the city hall.

“Our switchboard operator received a call around 9:56 a.m. The caller advised the operator to evacuate the building or else many people will be killed by a planted bomb,” said Richie Rodriguez, head of the Makati Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office.  

Rodriguez added that Binay ordered the evacuation “as part of our protocol and the K9 unit of the MDRRMO conducted panelling on all floors.”

But hours later, the authorities declared it was a hoax.

Binay earlier directed the Makati City Police, the Makati Public Safety Authority and the barangay officials to secure the city, its facilities and establishments following the explosion in Davao City last Friday night.

She said all mall operators and the owners and management of business establishments, commercial buildings and condominiums were also instructed to coordinate with the Makati Police on beefing up security in their respective areas.

“As we stand as one nation in prayer for the victims of the Davao bombing, let us also unite in condemning the senseless violence that targets the poor and the innocent. It is a violence that promotes disunity rather than harmony, lawlessness instead of order, suffering instead of healing,” Binay’s father and former Vice President Jejomar Binay said.

Binay added “It is in times of tragedy and grief that we must commit ourselves to work together and heal the pain brought about by violence. The times call on us to contribute to building a safer, peaceful, loving country that will nurture every citizen, especially our children.”

For her part, Kusug Tausug party-list Rep. Shernee Tan, the daughter of former Sulu governor Sakur Tan, in a privilege speech, reported an attempt to forcibly open her Toyota Sienna minivan parked at the House of Representatives. Tan said police investigators ruled out carnapping and theft and said the suspects may have tried to plant a bomb in her vehicle.

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