The Commission on Human Rights on Tuesday condemned the killing of a 15-year old girl while on her way home in Ilocos Sur last July 2.
Lawyer-spokesperson Jacqueline Ann de Guia said CHR-Region 1 would be conducting an independent investigation into the death of the victim “in pursuit of justice for the aggrieved and her family and loved ones.”
The 15-year-old girl was on her way home in Cabugao, Ilocos Sur when a riding-in-tandem accosted her and shot her to death on Thursday night.
She earlier filed a complaint against one of the policemen of the San Juan municipal police station for acts of lasciviousness.
Another police officer from the same police station is facing a rape complaint lodged by the slain teenager’s 18-year-old cousin.
Both of them are now considered as suspects behind the killing.
There was no immediately available comment from either the Ilocos Sur provincial command or from the national headquarters at Camp Crame.
Citing information from the Cabugao police, CHR said the two girls were sexually harassed allegedly by the two police officers after they were arrested for violating the curfew hour.
“This experience again puts into light the vulnerability of women and children to gender-based violences, especially during the pandemic. Many of stories remains (sic) unreported until we hear their horrors of struggle out in the open,” De Guia said.
In a statement, CHR said the Philippine National Police’s women and children protection center had recorded 804 reported cases gender-based violence and violence against women and children between March 15 and April 30.
“However, because of the hidden nature of these violences at home, the actual number of cases might be higher,” it noted.
“As such, in the case of the slain 15-year old girl, we recognize the quick action of the PNP in denouncing the crime and for prompting an investigation of the suspects for murder charges,” De Guia said.
“We hold on to our police force’s commitment to ‘serve and protect’ our rights and, if needed, ensure accountability for the indignities committed even if the perpetrators are among their ranks,” she added.
She called on all concerned government agencies to ensure the safety of women and children in full compliance with international and domestics laws and standards.
“Primarily, proactive women and child protection measures and services must remain operational and strengthened during this period of heightened vulnerability. We hope to see a stop in the incidences of gender-based violence,” she stressed.
“And in the face of human rights violations that abound, CHR shall continue to be on guard against abuses, especially from those who are suppose to respect and protect our rights,” she said.