TIMESMAN | Confusing probe

THE INTER-AGENCY Anti-Task Force ruled out arson as the cause of fire that gutted the homegrown NCCC Mall at the corner of Maa Road and Mac Arthur Highway on Dec. 23, last year.

The fire, according to investigators, was caused by a short-circuit in the ceiling between the fabric and furniture sections of the mall’s third level.

But what has confused me was the refusal of Sr. Supt. Jerry Candido, spokesperson of the task force, to name those eight Bureau of Fire Protection XI active and retired personnel who might face charges in connection with the tragedy that killed 38 individuals, 37 of them being call center agents.

However, in a report by a national newspaper, the task force identified some these active and retired personnel as responsible for the issuance of the fire permits. Those on active duty were eventually relieved.

If these individuals were the same as those Supt. Candido was refusing to identify, what was his motive in not naming them when the reports already mentioned their identities? As a spokesman for the task force, Candido should be consistent of what he was telling the public.

The task force is fast in telling the public the cause of fire but too slow in identifying those responsible for the incident.

In this case, I suggest that the investigators must also be investigated for confusing the public.

                                               -o0o-

The fire that also hit Davao Light and Power Company along C. Bangoy Street (Ponciano Reyes) the other Sunday worries me. It was also reported caused by short circuit at the company’s call center.

Just imagine, the company for so many years has been reminding its customers to be extra careful in dealing with non-professional electricians and using substandard electrical materials has also become a fire victim.

And to think that the old fire department and city’s 911 emergency rescue unit are right at the entrance of the new building of the company, not to mention its emergency response crew, yet the fire lasted for almost two hours!

Anyway, incidents like this can hit anyone. Walang pinipili. It’s good that our friends from DLPC didn’t claim that the fire was originated from a lighted candle that tumbled down because of brownout!

Except in its press releases that bill collection will continue in all authorized collection agents. Bayad na kayo!

-oOo-

I personally saw illegal settlers dismantling their houses built near the river bank when I passed by Bolton Bridge on the way to my old residence in Matina last Friday.

I said to myself that if not for a mayor who has political will to discipline Davaoenos to do the right thing, the city will continue to face challenges from people who continue to defy the law.

It will be recalled that Mayor Inday Sara ordered early last week the demolition of all houses built near the river bank affected by overflowing waters from Davao river that claimed lives and destroyed properties.

A day after the mayor’s order was implemented some 143 informal settlers in the hazard areas in the river bank voluntarily dismantled their houses without untoward incident reported.

Unfortunately, only one of the 143 homeowners affected by the demolition order was qualified for relocation.

-oOo-

Two days from today will be my red letter day. While other celebrants expect their D-days a memorable ones, nagsawa na ako sa kabibilang ng edad!

Posted in Opinion