The Nationalist People’s Coalition or NPC has filed a resolution condemning in the strongest possible terms the brutal massacre of the 44 troopers of the Philippine National Police-Special Action Force or PNP-SAF in Mamasapano, Maguindanao.
It said justice for the fallen heroes should be immediately rendered.
The Nationalist People’s Coalition also called for the indefinite suspension of all proceedings on the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law or BBL until the completion and submission of the results of the investigation of this heinous crime, which is part and parcel of the process to seek justice for the 44 SAF.
“The NPC stands in solidarity with the collective sentiments of our people in expressing indignation and in condemning in the strongest possible terms the brutal massacre of the 44 fine young members of the PNP-SAF who will never be forgotten and will always be in our hearts as we honor them as our new breed of heroes,” stated in House Resolution 1903, which was signed by the 39 congressmen of the political party founded by industrialist Eduardo “Danding” Cojuangco.
The NPC deplored the brutal massacre of the SAF commandos which happened while congressmen are in the thick of deliberations toward the passage of the BBL. Malacañang has been pushing for the passage of the BBL as part of the peace deal with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front or MILF.
“This may well be an ominous sign for us to step back, reflect and proceed cautiously in crafting a law that will truly and genuinely bring peace not only in Mindanao, but in the entire country as a whole,” wrote in the National People’s Coalition’s resolution.
It further resolved “to extend our deepest condolences with the bereaved families of the 44 young and valiant members of the PNP-SAF who gallantly fought until their last breath in the service of our country…and ensure that justice is served and lessons are learned so their ultimate sacrifice for our country would not be in vain.”
Valenzuela City Congressman Win Gatchalian, a stalwart of the NPC, earlier filed House Bill No. 5404, to be known as the “Mamasapano Truth Commission Act”, which seeks to create an independent body that will investigate the top-secret SAF operation.
“The Mamasapano Commission will be responsible for investigating the preparation and implementation of the SAF operation, the real sequence of events on the ground during the incident itself, and any other occurrences material to the identification of the accountabilities and liabilities of all parties either directly or indirectly involved in the incident. In pursuit of this responsibility, the Commission shall be vested with broad investigatory powers,” Gatchalian said in his explanatory note.
Gatchalian said the Mamasapano incident last Jan. 25, considering its urgency and gravity, requires the swift passage of the measure creating such commission. The fact-finding panel will have the power to summon resource persons and witnesses, including President Benigno Aquino III.
The lawmaker also maintained that the President should be among those who will be summoned by the said commission following persistent reports that he gave the go-signal for the SAF operation and he even flew to Zamboanga on Jan. 25 reportedly to monitor the progress of the operation.
“The President should also attend the proceedings of such commission if his testimony is needed and truthfully answer the questions of the panel. He should lead by example,” said Gatchalian.
The twin ideals of justice and peace were in Gatchalian’s mind when he decided to file HB 5404. (R. Burgos)