GP: Bacolod is no criminal haven; Benitez says ‘it is not our jingle’

April 6, 2022 by No Comments

“BACOLOD City is not a haven for criminals.”This was the statement issued by Grupo Progreso (GP), a local political party led by incumbent Mayor Evelio Leonardia, in reaction to a song entitled “Albee Kaayuhan sang Bacolod” and published in the Facebook page of his opponent, former congressman Alfredo Benitez.The close to four-minute song, performed by Philippine music icon Freddie Aguilar, is now making the rounds on social media.For GP, the portion of the song that says “Wakasan na ang Krimen” sends local police authorities at a loss because Bacolod City has one of the lowest crime indices in Western Visayas, its spokesperson Chris Sorongon said.Sorongon, a councilor aspirant, noted that records from the Police Regional Office (PRO)-Western Visayas showed that the highly urbanized city’s crime incidents in fact are only at 234 from January to February this year.Of that number, 38 are index or heinous crimes, while the rest are petty or non-index crimes, records from the Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO) showed.For that same period, BCPO had the highest number of operations against various criminalities at 849, while Iloilo City only had 687, he said.Earlier, BCPO Operations Branch head Colonel Lester Leada said that Bacolod City is generally peaceful despite the number of killings, some of which are yet to be resolved.”Pathetic, to say the least, it was meant to scare visitors and would-be investors,” Sorongon lamented, adding that it is an insult to the people of Bacolod.He said Bacolod would not have garnered numerous awards if crimes and corruption, as implied in the song, do thrive in the city.Sorongon also said that the Department of the Interior and Local Government has set very high standards before awarding the Seal of Good Local Governance to any locality.The GP, in a statement, also said that “it is ironic that Benitez has commissioned folk singer Freddie Aguilar to compose and interpret a campaign jingle that obviously pictures the city as the seat of crimes and corruption.”But Benitez’s camp in a statement said “this is not our jingle and we introduced it as a song by Freddie for Albee.”