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DILG usec Dino key to re-educating barangay heads

IT’S sad to learn that another curfew violator has died allegedly after he was caught by a team of barangay watchmen in Calamba, Laguna.

The 26-year-old victim reportedly went out to buy food at around 10 p.m. of April 7.

Since it was past the 6 p.m. curfew that was in force due to the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), the barangay tanods accosted him.

Reportedly, the victim, out of fear, tried to flee but the barangay tanods caught up with him and had him re-arrested.

The victim subsequently died under circumstances which are now under investigation so we will not make any speculations as to what really happened along the way.

Before him,or days earlier, another man also reportedly died in Cavite after he was ordered to perform 300 rounds of squat jumps as punishment also for violation of the curfew hours.

If charges are true that the barangay tanods involved in both cases committed certain abuses in the authority bestowed upon them to implement the curfew, something must be done to avert similar incidents specially in the light of developments where another or even a stricter quarantine status may be declared by the national government due to the rising cases of COVID-19.

Undoubtedly, we are all growing tired and weary due to the stresses brought on by the prolonged pandemic, whose total solution is nowhere in sight yet.

Barangay watchmen are human beings too and just like the rest of us, they can also become anxious about the situation and may be battling their own problems at home.

In light of this, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) can do something by coming up with specific rules and guidelines that the barangay authorities can follow when implementing the curfew hours.

As it is, there is no clear-cut policy as to how the violators must be specifically handled or what are the dos and donts.

It also cannot be denied that sometimes, in deference to those who are behaving properly, there are barangay tanods who do not practice what they preach.

In fact, there are some who even lead the pack of violators of set rules and regulations using their position as their license, so they can drink right in the street or commit other violations of the ECQ.

With the said two incidents I mentioned happening days of each other, there is a need to arrest the situation.

Curfew violation is such a very minor infraction. No one has to die because of it.

Leaving these implementers full and wide discretion over those caught violating the curfew will really open the floodgates for all sorts of abuses, sad to say, although I actually believe there are more good barangay tanods than bad ones.

I am certain that DILG undersecretary for barangay affairs Martin Dino can effectively handle this aspect of re-educating the heads of barangay who, in turn, can also re-educate their underlings as they implement the curfew hours.

Being a former barangay chairman himself, the barangay leaders respect and look up to him and would surely want to emulate him. Good luck, sir.

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Jokjok (from Christopher Bolante of Tarlac, Tarlac)—- PETRA:Sir, tatanungin ko lang po sana kung kumusta po ang grades ko? Kasi hindi po ako nakapag-aral nung exam natin/ TEACHER: Aba, Petra! Kasingganda ng buhok mo/PETRA: Talaga po? Wow naman! Tsinambahan ko lang mga sagot ko eh/TEACHER: Oo, parang bagong rebond. BAGSAK NA BAGSAK!

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