MANILA, Philippines (4th UPDATE) – The superiors of the hostage taker in a Greenhills mall apologized and offered to resign on Monday evening, March 2, to appease the gunman.
In a press conference organized by cops, the 6 bosses, sitting in a row, read out prepared statements apologizing to the gunman and expressing their intention to quit their posts.
Four of the six have been identified by cops as the following:
- Fernando Solina – Head of Corporate Safety and Security of Greenhills Mall
- Salvador Capadocia – Security Coordinator of Greenhills Mall
- Henry Tuason – Safeguard Armor Security Corporation (SASCOR) security agency field officer
- Frederick Gravador – Assistant Director of SASCOR
The gunman was identified as Alchie Paray, a 40-year-old guard for Greenhills Shopping Center who was apparently fired after going on absent without leave for weeks.
At the end of their statements, the bosses said they followed the demand of Paray to end the “crisis” swiftly.
As of 6:30 pm, authorities said around 30 people were still held hostage in the administrative office of V-Mall.
Before this, Rappler had listed at least 14 hostage-taking incidents in the past 31 years. (READ: LIST: Hostage-taking incidents in the Philippines)
To recall, Paray demanded to speak with his colleagues and the media. Both demands have been met by cops.
Paray demanded that his bosses eat P2,500 in front of the media, police told reporters on Monday evening.
Speaking to reporters as negotiations were ongoing, Eastern Police District operations chief Colonel Orlando Yebra said the gunman wanted two of his ex-bosses to eat P2,500 in public as a demand before freeing hostages.
Yebra said they were able to ask Paray to reconsider.
“In exchange for him to concede is my announcement to you that I request him not to demand so anymore,” Yebra said in Filipino.
After Yebra’s announcement, 6 bosses of Paray from the SASCOR security agency and Greenhills security team faced the media and apologized to Paray and expressed their intention to resign from their posts.
Management to look into complaints
At a little past 8 am, hostages were seen walking free from inside the mall. The suspect walked out of the mall together with his hostages, and addressed the media and the crowd outside.
Twenty minutes into detailing his grievances against his employers and then suddenly addressing the mayor, the Paray was tackled by cops. They spotted a pistol tucked to his waist.
This was in violation of the agreement he reached with the cops during negotiations, which included leaving behind his weapons.
In statement sent to the media after the suspect’s arrest, the Greenhills Center Management said, “Management continues to cooperate with authorities and will have a post-incident assessment with the police to avoid a repeat of this unfortunate situation.”
It added, “Management will also look into allegations made by the hostage taker against security agency officials who allegedly take bribes from tenants to disregard shopping mall policies.” – Rappler.com