SAF 14 Kin Receive Support from City, Concert and BIBAK Northern California
May 9, 2015
A humanitarian concert initiated by the police, media and Baguio folksingers last March 28 netted P239,000 which was distributed to relatives left behind by the 14 Cordillera police officers who were massacred last January 25 in Mamasapano, Maguindanao.
Over in the United States, members of the BIBAK chapter of Northern California pooled P70,000 which they also handed to the fallen heroes’ kin during a twin turn-over infront of the Baguio city hall last Monday morning.
Only last April 27, at the rites marking the 70tbh anniversary of the liberation of Baguio from the Japanese imperial forces, city mayor Mauricio Domogan and city social welfare and development officer Betty Fangasan handed P20,000 each to the families of 13 of the 44 members of the Special Action Force of the police who were slain by Muslim rebels while they were in pursuit of international terrorist Zulkifli Abdhir.
Benguet Province, through Gov. Nestor Fongwan, was among the first to extend it support of P10,000 to each of the families of the 13 SAF members upon the arrival of the officers’ remains at the regional police headquarters last Jan. 30.
In last Monday’s turn-over, each family received P17,100 from the proceeds of the concert dubbed “He’s My Brother” and hosted by the University of Baguio., aside from P5,000 each from the BIBAK ore Northern California.
The beneficiaries included the family of PO2 Joel Dulnuan , a SAF member not included in the original list as his address was in Nueva Vizcaya. His father, who received the fund support from the concert proceeds, missed the BIBAK donation and may claim the same from the information division of the city mayor’s office.
Mayor Domogan said the fund drives only proves the keen sense of community of Baguio and Cordillera residents.
The musical treat was made possible by Baguio-Cordillera folksingers led by lawyer Jose “Bubut” Olarte and Albert Banasan, president of the Cordillera Entertainers (Baguio-Benguet-based) Association who performed pro bono for four hours. With them were a-line dancers from the BaguioBenuet Cowgirls and the El Caballeros of Guisad led by Ferdy Bayasen.
The concert was jointly sponsored by the regional police headquarters led by Chief Supt. Isagani Nerez, the Baguio Correspondents and Broadcasters Club headed by television newscaster Dobie de Guzman, alumni of the Philippine National Police Academy, the regional Crime Investigation and Detection Group under Sr. Supt. Jimmy Catanes, the Baguio City Police Office and the Benguet Provincial Police office.
Representatives of the BIBAK of Northern California led by its past president, Art Bulayo, came for the turn-over rites.
An initial effort launched earlier by a group led by lawyer-real estate developer Alex Bangsoy triggered an outpouring from all over, specially from expatriates who trace their roots to the Cordillera, contributing individually or collectively for a total donation of P2,552,379.09.
“Many of our ‘kababayans’ living overseas who helped raise the amount did so anonymously,” Bangsoy, who was overwhelmed by the response, said.
Following the on-line fund drive, the Metro Baguio Practical Shooters Association led by Gilbert Atioan staged a shootfest that raised P140,000 for the kin of the 14 heroes.
The slain Cordillera warriors were led by Sr. Inspectors Cyrus Anniban of Tabuk, Kalinga and Gednat Tabdi of La Trinidad, Benguet. The rest were P03 Robert Allaga, P03 Noel Golocan, PO2 Joel Dulnuan, PO2 Peterson Carap, PO2 Walner Danao,PO2 Franklin Danao, PO2 Jerry Kayob, PO2 Noble Kiangan, PO2 Nicky de Castro Nacino Jr., PO2 Russel Bilog, PO1 Gringo Cayang-o and PO1 Angel Kodiamat./Ramon Dacawi.