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Thursday, July 25, 2024

Padilla seeks probe into alleged excessive police force during raid in KOJC Davao City

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Senator Robinhood Padilla is raising serious concerns about possible violations of human rights by the Philippine National Police (PNP) during their June 10 operation at the Kingdom of Jesus Christ (KOJC) premises in Davao City.

The raid, aimed at serving an arrest warrant on fugitive preacher Apollo Quiboloy, has come under scrutiny for the methods used by PNP operatives, including those from the Special Action Force (SAF) and the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG).

Padilla is particularly interested in whether the PNP adhered to its policy of respecting human rights or if the operation involved “unnecessary and excessive force.” He cited reports of missionaries claiming they were allegedly hurt during the raid on KOJC facilities, including the Prayer and Glory Mountains.

Former President Rodrigo Duterte, recently appointed as the Administrator of KOJC properties, condemned the raid, describing it as a clear violation of the law and an “overkill in any language.” He stressed the importance of maintaining public order and safety while respecting human dignity.

In light of these events, Padilla plans to file a resolution on Tuesday, June 18, calling for a Senate investigation into the PNP’s actions. He emphasized that law enforcement must consider the totality of the situation when serving warrants to ensure they do not violate individuals’ dignity.

Padilla’s resolution underscores the constitutional mandate for the government to protect and serve its people and to uphold human dignity and rights. The PNP’s Human Rights-Based Policing (HRBP) policy further supports these principles, he said.

The senator also highlighted past incidents where the PNP was criticized for excessive force, such as the 2022 arrest of an elderly environmental activist in Pakil, Laguna by 25 SAF members, and the 2016 operation involving CIDG personnel that resulted in the death of Albuera Mayor Rolando Espinosa.

Padilla pointed out that the PNP’s Revised Operational Procedures mandate the use of only necessary and reasonable force to enforce the law and maintain peace.

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