DEPUTY Speaker and Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus Rodriguez on Thursday urged President Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte to recall the appointment of Maj. Gen. Bartolome Vicente Bacarro as new commander of the military’s Southern Luzon Command.
Bacarro replaces the spokesman of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) Lt. Gen. Antonio Parlade, who is retiring on July 26.
Rodriguez said Bacarro was then Commandant of cadets when Philippine Military Academy (PMA) cadet Darwin Dormitorio died of hazing on September 18, 2019.
Darwin was a constituent of mine in Cagayan de Oro, Rodriguez said.
Rodriguez added the Baguio City police, which investigated the case, had filed criminal charges against Bacarro and then PMA superintendent Lt. Gen. Ronnie Evangelista.
The city prosecutor’s office dismissed the charges against and filed a complaint against several of their PMA underlings, Rodriguez added.
Rodriguez, a former law dean, stressed the Anti-Hazing Law places great responsibility for any hazing incident and irregularity on those who have supervision over such activities.
He pointed out that at the time Dormitorio died of hazing, Bacarro was commandant of cadets and had direct responsibility over the activity that resulted in Dormitorio’s death.
According to Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, Bacarro would take over Parlade as South Luzon Command chief as soon as possible.
The President signed the former PMA official’s appointment last Monday, June 28.