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Bystanders pick up pieces after Wednesday’s shootout

The only thing we heard was the guns firing, and at that moment, we ran away, leaving our goods here. We didn’t care about our goods. We just ran.

Paula Antolin

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As both houses of Congress and the National Bureau of Investigation have yet to get to the bottom behind the misencounter between members of the Quezon City Police District and agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) last Wednesday, innocent bystanders who were caught in the crossfire of the incident have yet to resume their lives and remain fearful of their lives.

The Daily Tribune talked to a tricycle driver who was in the area during the incident, and he said he is just picking up the pieces having stayed away during the past week.

The driver known as “Tikoy” said he saw the PDEA members at the parking lot of the fast-food restaurant exchanging gunfire with the police.

“I saw a man wearing a white shirt. He was shot and fell to the ground. He was shot in the head” the driver said.

He said seeing “another person there, I don’t know if he was an asset, pointing to somebody and saw an NMAX motorcycle. Then, the shooting started.”

He added “the man on the motorcycle also fired at them and started chasing each other.”

“We were all here lying down facing the ground, but I saw those civilian PDEA firing at those uniformed PNP,” he explained.

The gunshots only stopped when one of the uniformed PDEA came forward and introduced themselves.

There are unverified reports that five days after the incident, five gasoline boys at the nearby station who were on duty at the time of the shootout have gone on leave allegedly traumatized by what they have witnessed.

A sidewalk vendor who usually vends outside the fast-food restaurant said once the shooting started, all she could think of was running away to save her life.

“The only thing we heard was the gun firing, and at that moment, we ran away, leaving our goods here. We didn’t care about our goods. We just ran,” she said.

“We just returned here only yesterday after the incident, together with my husband. We understand we cannot do anything about what happened. We all know that it’s an accident,” she added.

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