By ANNE MARXZE D. UMIL
MANILA – Volunteer teacher of the Lumad bakwit school Roshelle Porcadilla has been taken out of the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) without the knowledge of her lawyers and family, according to the Save Our Schools Network.
Kabataan Party-list Rep. Sarah Elago was supposed to visit Porcadilla on Sunday, Feb. 28 but PCol. Robert Limbawan said the teacher has been brought to the Police Regional Office-7 under the orders of Philippine National Police chief Debold Sinas.
Elago, members of the SOS team and a relative of Porcadilla went to the PRO-7 to see the teacher but authorities denied them access. They asserted that she cannot be spoken to without her legal counsels or relatives.
“We call for the release of teacher Roshelle. Teacher Roshelle is a committed and dedicated volunteer teacher of the Lumad students. We fear that her isolation and transfer to another facility without prior legal counsel and consultation from her lawyers and information from her families will exacerbate her trauma and put her security at risk,” the group said.
The SOS Network said that this is not the first time that the police attempted to hide Porcadilla from her family and colleagues. After the incident last Feb. 15, SOS Network said that it took 24 hours before she was able to see her legal counsel.
The SOS Network also said that there is no truth to the claims of Limbawan that the National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers (NUPL)-Cebu is not her legal counsel. The group said Porcadilla has signed the request for preliminary investigation and waiver of Article 125 of the Revised Penal Code confirming that the NUPL-Cebu will represent her.
“She also previously expressed that she was made to make a statement during a custodial investigation without counsel. She has also experienced intimidation from her custodians,” the SOS Network said.
The group also called on the Commission on Human Rights-Region 7 to intervene on the irregularities on the handling of and the intimidation against Porcadilla by the police.
Last night, the group held a protest outside of the PRO-7 demanding her release.