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Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief, Police General Guillermo Lorenzo T Eleazar directed the Sta Rosa City Police to get in touch with the parents of former Kabataan Partylist Laguna chapter coordinator Kemuel Ian Cometa to validate claims that he has been missing for over a week.
 
Karapatan Timog Katagalugan alleged that Cometa, an alumnus of the University of the Philippines-Los Baños, was being detained by the police after state forces raided last May 21 a house in Barangay Macabling of Sta. Rosa City. The Sta. Rosa City Police has denied the claim.
 
“Mas mainam sana kung ang pamilya ang dumulog at pormal na magreport sa ating pulisya na nawawala ang kanilang kaanak. Kung hindi man, inaatasan ko ang Sta. Rosa City Police na sila na ang lumapit at makipag-ugnayan sa mga magulang nitong si Kemuel Ian Cometa, kung hindi pa nila nagagawa,” PGen Eleazar said.
 
According to the PNP Chief, “We need to talk to the parents of Kemuel and establish if he is really missing and, if verified, find leads to his possible whereabouts.  We are ready to help in the search if he really has been missing for more than a week.”
 
He pointed out, “Bilang ama, gugustuhin ko din na ligtas sa lahat ng oras ang aking mga anak at hindi ako mapapakali hangga’t hindi ko ito nasisiguro. Masakit ito para sa aming mga magulang.”
 
“Ako na mismo ang mananawagan sa mga nakakakilala o kaibigan ni Kemuel na makipagtulungan para sa dagliang pagtunton sa kinaroroonan niya,” he added.   Meanwhile PGen Eleazar called on those claiming that Cometa was in police custody to present evidence supporting the serious allegation.
 
“Base sa natanggap nating report mula sa local police, wala silang nadatnan na Kemuel Ian Cometa sa raid na kanilang isinagawa noong May 21 at wala din kabilang  na Kemuel Ian Cometa sa mga subject ng kanilang operasyon,” he said.
 
The PNP Chief lamented, “Napakadali kasing magbintang ng samu’t-saring maling gawain sa ating kapulisan pero bago sana tayo magbitiw ng paratang ay tiyakin natin na meron tayong pinanghahawakan na ebidensiya o testigong magpapatunay. Otherwise, we would just be spreading unfounded rumors and causing undue anxiety to the public, including Kemuel’s relatives.”
 
“Pero ang priority sa ngayon ay matunton ang kinaroroonan nitong si Kemuel, kung ito nga ay nawawala, at matiyak na siya’y ligtas,” PGen Eleazar said.