It’s been four days since the Philippine Daily Inquirer broke the story about the suspicious death of Carl Angelo Arnaiz. For those who missed it, Arnaiz is a 19-year-old young guy who is accused of engaging in an armed robbery against a taxi driver in Caloocan City last August 18.
Arnaiz then purportedly fought against responding police officers, which triggered a firefight (“nanlaban”) that led to his killing. A report filed before the Caloocan City Police claim that illegal drugs had been recovered on him as well. Unfortunately, a dead man cannot possibly defend himself against any allegations.
Carlito Arnaiz, the teenager’s father, understandably question the Caloocan City Police’s negative characterization of his son as well as their version of the events that led to his death. He pointed out that his son is an achiever – a former elementary valedictorian and a science high school alumnus. His son was also admitted to the Interior Design program of the University of the Philippines College of Home Economics, although he had to stop studying after one semester due to depression.
Now, it is worth pointing out that the normally-outspoken leaders of the University of the Philippines, both at the system and the campus levels, have not said anything about Arnaiz’ case. What are they waiting for before they speak out about the apparent killing of one of the university’s (former) students?
First, they can issue a statement re Carl Angelo Arnaiz’ current academic status. Reports say that he “dropped out” of the university. What does this mean? Did he just drop several subjects, or did he go on leave?
More importantly, they can call on the authorities to do everything they can to get to the bottom of Arnaiz’ unexplained death. Is the UP administration, now led by President Danilo Concepcion, too spineless to challenge the hand that supposedly feeds the university?
Lest it be misunderstood: The budget allocation that UP System gets year after year comes from taxpayers money, not from the pockets of those in the Duterte administration.