Daily Archives: January 21, 2020

Twin killings jolt Dinagyang month

“When I hear about people murdering, I wonder, What has to go through your brain to say, I don’t want him breathing anymore? What makes you get that angry? How can you take someone’s breath away? That just blows my mind.”

Gilbert Arenas

By Alex P. Vidal

IT’S so sad that one of the victims in last Sunday’s senseless killings in Iloilo City was Delfin “Del” Celestial Britanico, youngest son of former Iloilo assemblyman and Banat Partylist Rep. Salvador “Buddy” Britanico and Dr. Lita Celestial-Britanico.

According to a popular digital resume Linkedin, Del was the “Co-Head at Britlao Corp/Manager at KM Haulers Britlao Corp Ateneo de Manila University.”

What a waste of life; Del was not an ordinary Ilonggo. 

He was a productive and worthy member of society.

Del, a legitimate businessman, was highly regarded in his field and came from a very educated and well-respected family in Western Visayas.

In one of his articles posted online, Del narrated how he decided to leave “a great job at a stable company to a smaller organization or a start up.”

Del, a bike enthusiast, wrote that “I stayed in the new company for 2 years. I only disengaged because I had to settle down with family outside Manila. In those two years I could proudly say that the company grew tremendously. Being the small kid on the block or in our industry, we picked our battles. We found our own niche. Growth was so well that our suppliers brought us to their headquarters in the US. Looking back yes I missed on some benefits especially when the old company I used to work for was acquired by a foreign giant. I saw Facebook and Instagram posts of my former colleagues being sent around the world for trainings, etc. But deep inside, I was contended. I made an impact and I am proud of it. My involvement in that smaller company opened some doors in terms of business ventures which are already materializing now.”

What a short life for a great young entrepreneur and possibly a future leader in the industry he had chosen to be part of.

Our sincerest condolences to the Britanico and Celestial families.


MAYOR Geronimo “Jerry” Treñas has all the reason to be jittery after the twin killings in separate places in Iloilo City on Sunday, January 19, the day before the official countdown of the 2020 Dinagyang Festival week.

The crimes happened just after the Iloilo City Police Office (ICPO) has assured the public it was beefing up the metropolis’ security measure to ensure a peaceful celebration of the Feast of Señor Santo Niño.

Treñas was apparently disturbed by the coincidence of the macabre murders of call agent Allen Muller, 42, at 12 noon in Brgy. Cuartero, Jaro district and businessman Delfin Britanico, 36, minutes later in Brgy. Nabitasan, La Paz.  

“Why they happened during the Dinagyang month when the whole world is watching us?” the city mayor must’ve wondered. 

Why all of a sudden two successive murders when Iloilo City’s peace and order has not been so alarming these past months? 

For sure the killers didn’t commit the crimes to embarrass the ICPO and Iloilo City, which is expecting a lot of tourists for the annual ati tribe competition this week.


“Of course we are worried. We have dignitaries coming. I don’t want incidents similar to Sunday’s to happen again,” Treñas bewailed.
The mayor was right.

All the efforts of his infant administration to attract visitors and potential investors through this once-a-year huge event would be jeopardized if peace and order was in dire straits.

Violence and brazen murders like what happened last Sunday could destroy the image of the “City of Love” which is now inching its way back to normalcy following the weird accusation from President Duterte that it was the “most shabulized” in the country.

In the month of January, Iloilo City competes with other Philippines cities, provinces and regions in terms of public attention owing to its colossal cultural and religious celebration now known in most countries all over the world.

Tourists and Santo Niño devotees regularly checked the Google and other Internet sites for the latest news about the popular festival and all they could read was about the killings.

We had chided  authorities or those in charge of implementing this administration’s wild and woolly anti-illegal drugs campaign not to sully the image of the Dinagyang Festival by the blood of victims of EJK or extra-judicial killings.

It appears our appeal turned out to be another voice in the wilderness.

(The author, who is now based in New York City, used to be the editor of two local dailies in Iloilo)

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Posted by on January 21, 2020 in Uncategorized