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3 House panels to probe concert

Three House committees are set to conduct an inquiry into the concert in Pasay City last month where five persons died.

The Committees on Dangerous Drugs, Youth and Sports Development, and Metro Manila Development will probe the incident through a joint committee hearing on Monday at 1:30 p.m. at the Mitra Conference Room of the House of Representatives in Quezon City.

Quezon City Rep. Winnie Castelo, chairman of the Metro Manila Development panel, underscored the importance of holding the investigation if only for the purpose of raising awareness among the public.

“We may not pin down the culprits that caused the death of the five youngsters as this is within the purview of the police but what is more important is for us to be able to inform the public on the lethal effects of these drugs and come up with guidelines on the conduct of this activity to stave off the recurrence of this unfortunate incident,” Castelo said.

“We need to get to the bottom of this and once and for all put an end to speculations and that’s why we have invited the NBI, PDEA, SM, Unilever, Pasay police, and the event organizer to the joint committee hearing,” Valenzuela City Rep. Wes Gatchalian, chairperson of the Youth panel, said.

“We will bring to justice those who are responsible and seek ultimate facts to avert the occurrence of this tragedy in the future,” Oversight Committee on Dangerous Drugs chairperson Rep. Emy Calixto of Pasay said.

“There is so much at stake here and we cannot afford to let this slip without imputing the responsibility. Our youth would be at the mercy of this casual occurrence and there’s no telling how many more will fall victim to this kind of man-made tragedy if we don’t curb it right off the bat,” Castelo added.

The victims were found unconscious one after the other while the concert was ongoing on May 22. They were taken to various hospitals where they died.

An overdose of party drugs allegedly killed the victims. (Ellson A. Quismorio)