THE family of a teenager killed inside a motel last year welcomed the ruling of the Office of the Ombudsman removing a village chairman from service accused of rape in Cagayan de Oro City.
The decision, which was released Monday, was given to the media Tuesday.
“That’s good news. We are glad he is removed from office,” said Rex Loyola, the father of a 15-year-old girl who accused Pagatpat chairman Achilles Jude Babaran of raping his daughter on two occasions sometime in 2015, said in a phone interview Tuesday.
Last year, the minor was found dead inside the bathroom of a motel room after she and a male companion checked in.
Following the girl’s burial, her family decided to press charges against Babaran.
After finding substantial evidence, the Office of the Ombudsman has ordered the dismissal of Babaran.
In the teenager's complaint, she accused Babaran of raping her twice on June 19, 2015, when the village chairman invited her to come with him after attending a youth meeting, and on September 22 of the same year, when Babaran allegedly raped her again inside a motel room.
She said the suspect threatened to have her family ejected from their residence, a relocation site in Pagatpat, if she tells her parents.
In its ruling approved by Deputy Ombudsman Rodolfo Elman, the Ombudsman said it found substantial evidence to hold Babaran liable for grave misconduct.
“As a rule, a victim of rape will not come out in the open and make public the offense committed on her, undergo the agony and humiliation of a public trial and endure the ordeal of testifying on all the sordid details of the crime, if she had not in fact been raped, and if her motive was not to obtain justice and her testimony as to who abused her is not the truth,” the decision said.
“Thus, when a woman, more so if she be a minor, says that she has been raped, she says in effect all that is necessary to show that rape was committed, and if her testimony meets the test of credibility, the accused may be convicted solely on the basis thereof,” it added.
Babaran is currently detained at the city jail in Lumbia village. Loyola said the last hearing was held on February 7.
The next hearing is set on February 22.