Despite the high profile case for rape lodged Monday by two Slovakian nationals against a boatman from El Nido, the records of the Philippine National Police have shown that rape cases in the province are on a decline.
In a recent interview, Senior Superintendent Gabriel Lopez, the director of the Provincial Police Office (PPO) noted that the decline is seen in their statistics between 2015 to 2017, where rape cases reported went down from 95 to 80 cases last year.
He noted that some of the cases involved sexual abuse within the family, implicating uncles, fathers, male cousins, and stepfathers.
“Ang suspek ay ang mismong asawa ng nanay nila, o di kaya uncle, o di kaya tatay. Kapag umaalis ang nanay, o wala ang nanay, doon nangyayari ang pang-ra-rape,” Lopez told Palawan News.
He said some of the cases that were recorded by the police in the province happened in remote interior barangays.
In 2017, five rape cases were filed in court against relatives. All are awaiting court decisions. Of the 80 cases in the said year, 14 were attempted rapes, and 11 statutory rapes against 12 years old and below victims.
“Nakita natin na merong mga nangyayaring ganoon na madrasto ang involved, o kaya ang uncle o pinsan mismo ng biktima. Kadalasan ito ay nangyayari sa mga malalayong barangay, o sa bukid na walang masyadong maraming tao na lugar, kaya pinag-iingat natin lalo na ang mga nanay na may mga anak na babae,” he warned.
Lopez said parents should be careful in just entrusting their children to relatives.
“Dapat ingatan ang mga anak, lalo na iyong mga babae. Wag sila basta-bastang iwanan at ipagkatiwala,” he said.
He attributed declining trend of rape cases to the anti-illegal drugs campaign of the government.
“Napansin nga namin bumaba simula noong nag-tokhang. Iyong mga na-re-record pa rin, incest na yon sa malalayong lugar nangyayari,” Lopez added.