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Monday, July 30, 2012
THERE should be difference in perception of criminality in the region between actual crimes committed and their severity.
It may happen that the number of crimes committed has increased, but the rise is in petty crimes, which did not form a threat to people’s life and limb. But it may happen that, on record, the number of crimes committed decreased but their severity went up, and were thus more threatening and risky to the population.
The way current data on the actual crimes committed are reported seems to differ in the regional media. Sun.Star Cebu late last week reported that, based on the Regional Logistic Division data, crimes in Central Visayas (CV) decreased by eight percent overall. This supported claims by PNoy in his Sona that “the crime volume in the in Philippines decreased.”
“In the first quarter of this year, PRO 7 recorded 10,871 while last year had 13,270 crimes…Likewise, the record of the index crimes in the region also decreased: there were 9,406 in 2011 and 7,158 this year. From July 1 to 15, PRO 7 also recorded a total of 267 apprehensions in the region.
Theft, physical injuries, and robbery were the leading crimes which highlights the fact that the decrease may be in the minor crimes. This is anchored on the fact that in recent weeks, the crimes reported in the region were quite severe as to assault the sense of decency and moral stability of the people.
One is the reported arrest of a father who raped so many times his teenage daughter.
The crime was eventually reported by an aunt when the daughter could no longer hide her pregnancy. The other report concerns a 94-year old widower and a grandfather. The man was arrested for allegedly raping his 34-year old deaf-mute granddaughter.
Again, this report assumes a level of severity that shakes the moral stability of our domestic society, considering that it is the most affected, as well as the regional community, too. It may be quantifiably minor when considered against the backdrop of the total number committed in the region, but not really when considered in its social and moral severity.
Thus, to accept the full truth and reality of the national level of criminality in the region as cited in the President’s Sona is to accept the presumption that the crimes committed in the region are the same in number and severity, as we have pointed out.
And this assumption is the same state in all aspects of the regional socio-economic, as well as the social data contained in the presidential report to the Filipinos about the state of their country.
I think, there should be caution in appreciating the report.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on July 31, 2012.