UNITED BF HOMEOWNERS' ASSOCIATION, INC.
A CRY OF OUTRAGE
Before anything else, we should express our public sympathies to the family of Richard Capili who was gunned down right inside BF Homes Subdivision, not too far from Ruins Night Market last Sunday evening while resisting the car-napping of his family’s Revo. He was shot down in a brazen carjack in front of many people- tricycle drivers, the security guards of Center Mall, and passersby. Just 19 years, he lost his life instantly without warning. Put ourselves in the place of his parents, his brother and sister, and we would experience a crunching irrepressible outrage at his violent death.
What makes our disgust all the more stronger is that no one lifted a finger to help him – not the bystanders, not the tricycle drivers who would be expected to show their machismo, not the security guards at Center Mall. They turned tail. But more unforgivably the Barangay officials and the Police Detachment, which were only 2 short blocks away, failed to respond immediately. Richard died where he was shot, his sister pleading hopelessly for help.
There was a collective display of social apathy and cowardice. Nakakahiya! Those out there who were petrified to inaction should hide from shame. It would have been better if they risked their personal safety to save a dying boy. I can imagine how I would feel if it happened to our only son, 3 years older and a schoolmate of Richard! I can understand the bitterness (and helplessness) of his sister when I talked to her at Funeraria Paz.
But what was most disgusting was the response of the authorities. The Barangay arrived after 30 minutes and the police went to “sanitizing” mode right after. By then, the carnappers had driven off. The police downplayed the incident by telling the Center Mall guards (and those around) that it could not have been a carjacking/murder but probably the result of a personal grudge given that the vehicle was not new and presumably “not carnappable”. Talk of insult after injury! They were more concerned with downplaying the incident than investigating it.
And yet if they were honest with themselves, the police should have known that many Pajeros have been taken from BF after the forcible opening of our gates. Or that a lady employee of a beauty parlor along El Grande lost the sight of one eye when a holdupper hit her on the side of the face with a pistol when she refused to open the safe of the shop. There are many more, a carnapping near Cardama’s shortly after the opening of the gates, robberies, break-ins, petty thefts, car burglaries near the PCJ Church, vehicular accidents, etc. One of the houses broken into was that of the Mayor’s liaison officer a staunch opponent of the take-over of our gates by Mayor Marquez.
I cannot continue expressing our outrage without once more giving due respect to the grief of the Capili family and identifying our sentiments with their loss. However, Richard’s death would be meaningless if we do not do something about the conditions that allowed it to happen as well as the crimes cited above. Richard’s murder was an event waiting to happen.
We cannot be in a perpetual state of denial because we will only be giving more opportunity for future crimes to be committed within BF Homes. The statement of the city authorities, that Richard’s death could not be related to the forcible opening of BF’s gates because it happened in the commercial center, is splitting hairs but typical of the “whitewashing” often resorted to by the Mayor’s cordon sanitaire. Do they not know that criminal elements have been going in and out of our gates to the village and the commercial center? These were the conditions that made the shooting of Richard Capili possible. The rise of crime to a violent level is due to the failure of the city government to enforce peace and order.
In short, the Mayor and the city government are guilty of abetting the spread of criminality through bad governance, if not by default.
It is not our intention to use Richard’s death for political purposes. But if we do not express our indignation at this time, when will we ever do it? Let us express our collective sentiment and let the government take care of itself. Let us let it all hang out.
It has been reported that the Capili Revo has been recovered in La Union. One man was killed while two were arrested. Whoever took their Revo from Cavite to La Union used the plate number of another Revo which was previously stolen and reported to the authorities. However, the Revo’s recovery will not bring Richard Capili back to life. The PNP and the eyewitnesses should also make sure that the one killed and those arrested were really the perpetrators in BF, otherwise the latter will be back in our midst.
There is nothing political about pinning down responsibility for bad governance. It is merely giving due course to the principle of accountability in a democratic government. The attempts of the authorities to deflect or deflate responsibility for the deteriorating conditions in BF Homes is a feeble display of premature self-exculpation.
In the end, the final question is why was there a need for the city government to intervene in BF Homes which was tightly run, better managed than the city ever will, self-sufficient, internally funded, consistently struggling to give efficient services to its villagers and continuing to implement the master restrictions in the mother title? Why couldn’t the city government work with UBFHAI and strengthen its efforts to provide basic services for its residents?
The answer is politics, the need to control BF Homes for selfish political ends thereby destroying (or attempting to destroy) its established infrastructure. In so doing, the city has set in motion the breakdown in security that led to the untimely death of Richard Capili.
This is why we are outraged! Our deepest sympathies to the Capili family.