crimes in the Philippines

NCMH chief Roland Cortez, driver shot dead in Quezon City

Rambo Talabong
NCMH chief Roland Cortez, driver shot dead in Quezon City

SHOT DEAD. Doctor Roland Cortez of the National Center for Mental Health

NCMH photo

National Center for Mental Health chief Roland Cortez is shot dead in Tandang Sora, Quezon City

National Center for Mental Health (NCMH) chief Roland Cortez and his driver were shot dead on Monday morning, July 27, by unknown assailants.

In a phone interview with Rappler, Quezon City Police District (QCPD) Station 3 chief Lieutenant Colonel Benjamin Gabriel said Cortez and his driver were killed at around 7 am.

The investigation of the case will be headed, Gabriel said, by the QCPD Criminal Investigation and Detection Unit (CIDU).

Who is Cortez?

Cortez made headlines in April after one of the NCMH’s officials, Clarita Avila, said that the center was having an outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) all while having inadequate personnel and equipment.

After Avila made a series of statements to the media on the mental health center, Cortez issued a gag order against her. He later ordered her transferred to the Drug Abuse Treatment and Rehabilitation Center in Las Piñas City.

Cortez served under the Department of Health for more than 30 years. – Rappler.com

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Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.