Senate probe on missing ‘sabungeros’ eyed next week


The Senate is eyeing to conduct next week a motu proprio investigation into the rising number of cockfight enthusiasts reported missing by the Philippine National Police (PNP).

“Given the urgency of the issue while the Senate is on regular adjournment , I am planning to conduct an inquiry as part of my committee's oversight function over certain government agencies,” Senator Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa said in a text message shared to reporters.

Dela Rosa, chairperson of the Senate committee on public order and dangerous drugs, issued the statement after Senator Panfilo Lacson and Senate President Vicente Sotto III made a comment when asked on the issue.

During their weekly “Meet the Press,” Lacson and Sotto, running for president and vice president in Eleksyon 2022, respectively, said a Senate probe could be launched by either the committee on public order and dangerous drugs or the committee on games and amusement.

“Kung ako ang chairman [ng public order], I think, we should call for a Senate inquiry kasi medyo malala na talaga and hindi natin alam kung ano ang puno’t dulo nito,” Lacson, former chairman of the public order panel, said.

(If I am the chairman of that committee, I think, we should call for a Senate inquiry because this matter is getting worse and we don't know what is the root cause of this.)

For his part, Sotto said the committee on games and amusement, chaired by Senator Lito Lapid, could also launch an investigation into the matter.

“If necessary, if none of the members of the Senate are…interested, we can always ask the chairman of the committee on games to conduct an investigation or a hearing for that tiyakan imbitahin natin 'yung may mga reklamo (we should invite those who have complaints),” Sotto said.

He added they will “find ways” to talk to the families of the victims.


As of January 31, the Philippine National Police has reported 26 missing individuals who were last seen at cockfighting arenas.

The abduction of one missing “sabungeros” in Laguna was captured by a CCTV camera, according to Emil Sumangil’s “24 Oras” report on Wednesday.—AOL, GMA News