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Bishop laments ‘systematic’ police abuses

The string of incidents involving alleged police abuse is a “systematic” problem
in policing, a ranking Catholic bishop said.

“The string of recent events pertaining to police officers abusing their
authority in the past few weeks could be indicative of the fact that the
problem is systematic,” Bishop Pablo Virgilio David of Kalookan said.

The bishop was reacting to a recent incident involving a dismissed cop, who
cursed, hit, and cocked his gun at a cyclist after a road altercation in Quezon

The bishop is a vocal critic of former president Rodrigo Duterte’s ruthless war
on drugs and known defender of its victims.

The bloody campaign against narcotics had earned for his diocese, which covers
the three cities of Caloocan, Malabon and Navotas, the reputation of “killing
fields” at the height of the drug war.

At the recent funeral of Jerhode “Jemboy” Baltazar, a 17-year-old boy killed
by the police due to a supposed mistaken identity, he reminded the cops of
their sworn duty as law enforcers.

“Our dear cops, you are not the law. You are mere enforcers of the law,” said
David, who is also the president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the

“You were not given uniforms, armed, and being paid from the country’s taxes
just to kill people, but rather serve as our protector and savior of the country
you are serving,” he said. (CBCP Interaksyon)

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