PHILIPPINE National Police Chief Ronald Dela Rosa said it was wrong for the police operatives to "paralyze" the closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras during the raid at the compound of Ozamiz City Mayor Reynaldo Parojinog Sr. early Sunday morning.
"Kung tinatanong mo ako kung tama ba 'yun, hindi tama. Kaya nga invite ka sa pag-serve mo ng search warrant invite ka taga media, invite ka barangay officials para transparent. 'Yung CCTV that forms part of transparency, bakit kailangang tanggalin (It was wrong. You invited the media and barangay officials for the operation to be transparent. The CCTV cameras are part of transparent, so why cut them)," he said in a press conference in Camp Crame on Monday, July 31.
"(But) I leave it to them on the ground how to do their job. That's their consideration," he added.
On Sunday, July 30, operatives from the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group and the provincial and city police were met with heavy gunfire when they tried to enter the Parojinog compound to serve six search warrants against the mayor and some members of his family.
The raid resulted in the killing of the city mayor, his wife, and 13 others, while at least eight persons were arrested, including city Vice Mayor Nova Princess Parojinog-Echavez and Reynaldo Parojinog Jr.
The vice mayor earlier claimed that the CCTV cameras in their house were cut by the raiding team to hide the irregularities being committed during the raid.
But Inspector Jovie Espenido, Ozamiz City police chief, clarified that they cut the CCTV cameras in the compound to protect the identity of some of their agents and not for any other reasons.
Misamis Occidental Provincial Police Office Director Jeysen de Guzman said the police have no plan to kill the city mayor.
"Nag-neutralize lang po tayo ng threat... Kita n'yo naman may mga nahuli tayong buhay, even ang vice mayor ay nahuling buhay (We just neutralized threats. You can see that we arrested some; even the vice mayor was caught alive)," he said.
"Kung talagang ang intensyon ay papatayin po 'di sana mas marami siguro. May mga security sila na buhay po na nag-surrender (If the intention was to kill, perhaps many have died. There were even some security personnel who surrendered)," he added.
De Guzman denied that the evidence recovered from the Parojinog's residence were planted by the police, noting that there were barangay officials and media during the search.
Dela Rosa, for his part, said he would have wanted the city mayor alive, so he could answer the allegations against them.
"I want him alive, to answer the charges, pero kung lumaban siya, then I want my men alive more than him 'pag s'ya lumaban. After the smoke is cleared, it should be the good man standing and the bad man lying the pavement," he said. (SunStar Philippines)