Manila policemen have identified at least two persons believed to be behind the fatal hazing of Guillo Cesar Servando, a sophomore student of the De La Salle-College of St. Benilde.
The suspects—Rex Garcia and Hans Tamarin—were reportedly leaders of the Tau Gamma Phi fraternity.
Authorities said 11 members of Tau Gamma Phi could have been involved in the initiation rites that led to the death of Servando. Several of the victims’ schoolmates also sustained physical injuries after the initiation rites.
Chief Supt. Rolando Asuncion, commander of the Manila Police District, showed to the media on Monday a closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage showing Servando being carried from the elevator of One Archers Tower, a condominium near the DLS-CBS on Taft Avenue in Manila, to the unit of John Paul Raval, 18, on the 29th floor.
Raval on Saturday told investigators that they attended initiation rites of Alpha Kappa Rho (Akrho) at an undisclosed place. Akrho was founded in 1973 by students of the University of Santo Tomas (UST).
Dr. Jovana Fontanilla, head of the public affairs department of UST, refused to give any statement when contacted by The Manila Times. But she said concerned officials were informed of the incident and that they are coordinating with authorities.
Asuncion said the victims returned to Archers Tower on board two taxis and paid only P50, which only showed that the initiation rites were held near the vicinity of DLS-CSB.
Aside from Raval and Servando, four other students were seen in the footage. One of them was a certain Lorenzo Agustin.
The footage showed that Servando and his companions entered the condominium at 9:30 p.m. Servando, however, could not stand by himself. It took sometime before he was brought inside the condo unit owned by Raval.
Asuncion said Raval was able to contact the Philippine Red Cross at 12:35 p.m. but Servando was brought by an ambulance to the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) at 1:05 a.m.
Asuncion said witnesses will submit today their respective affidavits, which will be the basis for the filing of charges against the suspects.
Servando, 18, was taking Hotel and Restaurant Management. His body was brought to the De La Salle School in Mandaluyong City (Metro Manila) where his wake is being held.
Malacañang on Monday condemned the fatal hazing.
Palace spokesman Edwin Lacierda said the government will run after those responsible for Servando’s death.
“Certainly, this recent case of hazing is unacceptable to the government and so we are going to pursue all those who are instrumental in the heinous murder of this particular individual,” Lacierda said in a news briefing.
“We will definitely use the full force of the law to go after the hazing conspirators,” he added.
Lacierda said the practice of hazing should be stopped in all universities.
“This should not continue. We certainly would warn fraternities that there is an Anti-Hazing Act. And if any death occurs, you will be held liable,” he noted.
Republic Act 8049 strictly prohibits hazing or initiation rites in any form by a fraternity, sorority or organization without prior notice to school authorities. No physical violence must be employed by anybody during the initiation rites.
With Catherine S. Valente