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Massacre case ruling ‘benchmark’ of PH justice, says Pangilinan

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Senator Francis Pangilinan. INQUIRER PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — The resolution of the Maguindanao Massacre case will be a measure of how far the Philippines’ justice system has progressed, Senator Francis Pangilinan said.

“The Maguindanao Massacre case will be the benchmark of how far our justice system has progressed from previous administrations, whether we like it or not. It is then extremely urgent that we exert all efforts to resolve this case as swiftly as possible,” Pangilinan said in a statement Thursday.

“We must not allow this massacre be trivialized and buried in the annals of our history by the slow grind of our wheels of justice,” he added.

Friday marks the third anniversary of the massacre in the Maguindanao province in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao where 58 people were killed, 32 of whom jouurnalists.

The victims were traveling in a convoy with supporters of then Maguindanao mayor Esmael Mangudadatu who were on their way to file his certificate of candidacy.

Armed men then stopped the convoy in a remote area, brought them out, gunned them down and buried in a mass grave using a backhoe.

The massacre is widely regarded as the worst incident of political violence in the country’s history. Less than half of the 194 suspects remain at large. Members of the powerful Ampatuan clan were allegedly behind the massacre.

“That act was so brazen and so dastardly–it is horrifying to think that anyone is capable of doing this, and yet it happened,” Pangilinan said.

“It isn’t only the Ampatuans and their co-accused that are on trial here, but the entire system of justice. The failure to render a timely and just judgement is an indictment on the capacity of the nation to serve justice,” he said.

Pangilinan also urged the Philippine National Police to step up security measures for the relatives of the victims who have been receiving death threats.


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Tags: Francis Pangilinan , Justice , Maguindanao massacre


  • http://profile.yahoo.com/2Y3HOOAKZG7DI6ATMBGORQVIK4 RonnP

    e ikaw pala  Mr Sharon Cuneta, balimbing ka man nuon kay FPJ…sinuportahan mo nuon si GMA di ba Mr Balimbing? Kung sino ang malakas nuon sa pulitika, kahit mali, suportado mo…kagaya ni GMA…sinoportahan mo din ang mga Ampatuans, is that correct?

  • boybakal

    The Maguindanao Massacre case will be the benchmark of how far our justice system has progressed from previous administrations….Pangilinan said.

    Another oratorical statement from this Honorable Senator.
    He said this massacre case….of how far our justice system has progressed from previous administration.
    How could it be in progress, the case is still on going and with so many motions, pleadings after pleading, witnesses after witnesses.
    And you call that progress from previous administration.
    It is called Trial of the Century….living its name.
    In short, don’t pressure the judge.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_EDXEVEFHW2ZT5VWHDWBNM6XGE4 RyanE

    Noted!

  • randyaltarejos

    The Ampatuans are technically and legally prepared when they planned out the massacre of the 57 people, mostly journalists, in Maguindanao. They knew in advance that the criminal cases would drag on as what’s taking place right now. They’re also aware that the court will scrutinize the criminal case filed against each suspect. Before we knew it, the criminal cases against the massacre suspects have dragged on for many decades.

    • tarikan

      And perhaps even before they executed the plan one of their contingencies was to hire Atty. Fortun, the one and only cut out for the defense job. See the progress or non-progress of the case now?

  • randyaltarejos

    If the criminal cases against the massacre suspects, some of them have already joined the insurgent groups, are not resolved in due time, I have no doubt in my mind that vigilante groups will rise up to the occasion to get even, especially those who are still at large. Now, the danger is that those who are still at large may be tapped to eliminate the witnesses.

  • tra6Gpeche

    It is an understatement to say that the very slow wheel of justice of the Ampatuan Massacre trial is an embarrassment for the Aquino government and a disaster for the victims’ relatives.

  • EdgarEdgar

    Kiko is one to talk. He and his Liberal Party did not think twice about jumping in bed with the Ampatuans in a bid to cheat the votes in the south come May 2013. Because of Kiko’s hypocrisy, he sounds more and more like a frigid kiki when he starts talking about our justice system. But it should be noted however that Kiko’s marriage into the Cuneta family is the measure of Kiko’s cunning all in pursuit of Kiko’s political career. For all her meatiness, it wasn’t Sharon Cuneta’s flesh that Kiko was after or into. The megastar was really beside the point. So noted.

  • Philcruz

    It is indeed really difficult to imagine that all the powers and authority granted and laid before the feet of the President by millions upon millions of its citizens can hardly touch a few Ampatuans. Incredible. Incredible.

  • divictes

    Rhetoric will never diminish the anguish of the victims kin.

  • tukmoldinako

    The wheel of justice in the country is slow and biased to the many, the lawyer are only for the rich who could buy their freedom, most lawyers are cunning and recieving bribes to distort the truth and to the expense of many who are unable to pay the price.

    We call it the worst only because of numbers? Remember that this case was politically motivated  by a clan, a dynasty who thinks the place was their own and can  kill people in impunity.

    Count the many killings of people that are election related, are just the same as the Ampatuan who would like to perpetuate their positions as kings and most powerful in that place. Have they been forgotten? the many journalist said to have been killed because of being a loud mouth, the quintoses family are all the same as the Maguindanao case and should be treated as one that needed resolve.. if all killings are treated as one and not who you know, maybe the Pilipino people will then say , we have justice in the country. No to  political dynasty.  

  • sacrebleau

    “It isn’t only the Ampatuans and their co-accused that are on trial
    here, but the entire system of justice. The failure to render a timely
    and just judgement is an indictment on the capacity of the nation to
    serve justice,” he said.

    Very true.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_L7PILUDK6IPFGJLJNCM2IROCRY Albin

    The case is being delayed, because penoy wanted the suspects to implicate gma.

  • tarikan

    “It isn’t only the Ampatuans and their co-accused that are on trial here, but the entire system of justice. The failure to render a timely and just judgement is an indictment on the capacity of the nation to serve justice,” Mega Sen. Pangilinan said. There is already a failure to render a timely and just judgment senator, where you’ve been? Three years hence but Atty. Fortun has a field day of blocking all avenues of speedy justice and the prosecutors just say they can’t do anything. It’s not only the Ampatuan clan that are coming back in the political limelight, look up to the north. If it is with any comfort, the Maguindanao massacre victims are in good company with the martial law victims. Timely justice in the Philippines, senator Pangilinan? Not in God’s lifetime.

  • a1phantom

    Kung kaaway sana ni Noynoy….mabilis pa sa alas-kwatro yan…..kaso hindi..kaya mabagal

  • virgo57

    huwag na pag uusapan ang hustisya kasi masyadong mailap yan sa Pnas lalot ang me kasalanan me pera. Mas mura ang M 16 magazine kaysa mag hire pa ng abogado na mga sira ulo.

  • Your_King

    If the massacre case is the benchmark of PH justice system then that will be a low bench…a foot stool maybe. Its fair to say that Aquino has forgotten about this case already or at least he’s overlooked it. This is based on the fact that arrest warrants and cases against his political enemies spring up like popcorn popping but this is 3 years with no end in sight.



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