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DAVAO ORIENTAL, Philippines – The University of Mindanao (UM) suspended students linked to the September 18 Alpha Kappa Rho (AKRHO) hazing that killed a 19-year-old neophyte and badly hurt another in Sison, Upper Mandug in Buhangin District, Davao City.
In a statement on Monday, September 26, the UM said it suspended four of the 14 suspects but did not identify any of them.
The suspension, ordered by UM president Dr. Guillermo Torres Jr., was a decision made because school officials felt that “the name of the university [was] dragged, disrespected, and derided” as a result of the hazing death of August Ceazar Saplot.
“It is in this line that the university president has caused the suspension of four students who are enrolled at present to disabuse any hint of leniency and prevent them from coming to school while the disciplinary investigation is going on. We shall be coordinating with other schools to help curb this menace as some of those involved are enrolled with them,” read part of the UM statement.
Just like some of the suspects, Saplot was a UM Criminal Justice Education student.
The announcement of the suspension order came on the same day UM academics and students staged a “Prayer Walk against Hazing” at their Matina Campus in Davao City.
Saplot’s mother Regina also called for a stop to fraternity hazing, saying the death of her son hurt her and her family.
“Let my son, August Ceazar, be the last victim of hazing. It’s very painful. I call on my fellow parents to closely monitor the activities of your children in school,” said the teary-eyed Regina Saplot.
The UM said all the suspects are either currently enrolled or former students of the university, the largest private and non-sectarian higher education institution in Mindanao.
Of the 14 suspects, two already graduated from UM’s Criminology program.
Police have so far arrested and charged 8 suspects, four of whom are enrolled in UM’s Criminology, Management Accounting, Nursing, and Hospitality Management courses.
Authorities initially pressed hazing charges last week against eight suspects they arrested following the deadly hazing.
Charged were the following:
- Jeremiah Obedencia Moya
- Leji Wensdy Ofecio Quibuyen
- John Lloyd Garciano Sumagang
- Harold Joshua Sagaral Flauta
- John Steven Baltazar Silvosa
- Ramel John Potenciano Gamo
- Gilbert Escodero Asoy Jr.
- Roseller Andres Gaentano
There were six other suspects on the list of those at large last week, who are facing similar charges. The list included:
- Ryan James Ranolo
- Harold Gocotano
- John Bacacao
- Cherie Norico
- Kadjo Matobato
- George M. Regalado
The UM said five of the arrested suspects either dropped out or transferred to other schools.
The UM said it was still checking on the enrollment status of three suspects who have remained at large as of this posting. – Rappler.com