Regional Updates (01/07/21)

Police evidence in flight attendant’s death not enough to file charges

THE evidence submitted by the police were “not sufficient” to warrant filing of charges against the individuals tagged in the death of 23-year old flight attendant Christine Dacera, the prosecution said. Prosecutor General Benedicto A. Malcontento said Makati City prosecutors found the pieces of evidence submitted as “premature.” “We cannot file homicide murder, rape with homicide with the existing evidence presented so far by the PNP (Philippine National Police) and their witnesses,” Mr. Malcontento told CNN Philippines. Mr. Malcontento said the police submitted only the medico-legal and death certificate, which stated that the cause of death was aneurysm. Makati prosecutors on Wednesday referred the rape with homicide complaint for preliminary investigation and directed the release from detention of three respondents in the complaint. Ms. Dacera died in a Makati hotel room on Jan. 1 following a private New Year’s eve party. — Vann Marlo M. Villegas

Davao City council to hold hearings next week for COVID-19 vaccination budget, logistics

DAVAO City’s council will hold two public hearings next week on the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccination program, including the local budget needed to augment the national government’s distribution plan. “The reason for this (ordinance) passing is for us to be ready. This (vaccination) is being discussed at the national level. We should, at the local level, prepare for the arrival of the different vaccines,” Councilor Mary Joselle D. Villafuerte, chair of the council’s committee on health, said in mixed English and Visayan over the city-run radio station on Wednesday. “We can’t determine the budget for the vaccines now as it would depend on the cost of the approved vaccine that we will be able to purchase through the Department of Health (DoH),” she said. Ms. Villafuerte said the discussions aim to establish how many doses will have to be procured by the city government, and the logistical and manpower requirements for the inoculation. The hearings, set Jan. 11 and 14, will be attended by health experts and representatives from national health agencies, business leaders, indigenous people, and civil society groups.

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