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Police: Rape cases reach alarming level in Zambo


Police authorities have expressed alarm over the rising number of rape cases in Zamboanga City since January this year.

Based on the record of the Women and Child Protection Desk of ZCPO from January to September, the cases accounted for 89 rape cases among children and women in the city.

Zamboanga City Police Office spokesperson, Insp. Edwin Duco expressed alarm on the statistics.

“It is alarming since young female victims are purportedly raped by their perpetrators and it is still a crime committed against our women and children, and what concerns me most is that girls as young as 6 years old are already victims. Also, same incidents have been committed this past 5 consecutive days”, Duco said.

Based on police investigation, some of the rape cases reported happened a long time ago.

One example is that of a child who was raped when she was still in elementary but reported the incident when she was already in high school.

Duco said that the concerned agency is constantly stepping-up their information campaign on the implementation of Republic Act 9262 of the Anti-Violence Against Women and their Children Act of 2004.

“However, this is not enough and need to beef up their activities so as to address this issues in the society”, Duco said.

Duco further added that suspects were often under the influence of alcohol or drugs during the commission of the crime.

Meanwhile, City Social Welfare and Development Officer Socorro Rojas is baffled by the situation and could not explain why rape cases in the city reached this level.

“I was surprised why we have a big number of rape cases despite our advocacy campaign”, Rojas said.

Rojas cited campaign efforts of the head of the Women and Children Protection Division to disseminate information regarding abuse on women and children, and the right to redress.

Rojas said most rapes happen in remote areas where all members of the family share a house with no divisions or privacy.

“The daughters have no private space to dress and sleep. With that exposed condition, male family members under the influence of liquor or drugs can easily turn evil,” Rojas said.

The absence of an overseas working mother also sometimes pushes the father to turn to their daughters to satisfy their sexual desire, according to Rojas.

She also pointed to the proliferation of smut magazines or tabloids and pirated pornographic DVDs as factors in the rise in the number of rape cases.

She is urging barangay officials to help in monitoring their areas and immediately report cases to authorities. (Kikay Dongallo)

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