By Jennifer P. Rendon
Six police operations were launched against enthusiasts who participated in illegal cockfights in Iloilo province.
Members of the Iloilo Police Provincial Office (IPPO) conducted the operations in the towns of Maasin, Oton, Estancia, Lemery, Concepcion, and Barotac Viejo on Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Black Saturday.
The Oton police nabbed two persons – a 17-year-old boy and 75-year-old man – on April 1 at Barangay Calamisan around 10:45 a.m.
At 2:30 p.m., the Maasin Police Station only arrested two persons when they raided a makeshift cockpit at Barangay Tuy-an West.
But police were able to recover eight motorcycles, which may have been left behind by their owners in haste to elude police arrest.
On April 2, members of Estancia Police Station arrested six persons at Barangay Bulaqueña around 11:00 a.m.
Meanwhile, two persons were collared for participating in another cockfighting activity around 1 p.m. at Sitio Mahoma, Barangay Sincua, Lemery.
Members of Concepcion also conducted the same operation on the island barangay of Tambaliza around 3:50 p.m. and arrested five persons.
The following day, April 3, police also nabbed seven persons in an illegal cockfight at Barangay San Lucas, Barotac Viejo.
Colonel Gilbert Gorero, Iloilo police chief, said that the cockfights happened in unlicensed cockpits.
“And even if it happened in licensed cockpits, under the law, the local government could not still give permit for the holding of a cockfight during holidays, such as Holy Week,” he said.
To curb the possible surge of COVID-19 cases in the province, an executive order was also issued temporarily banning cockfights.