Palace worried as witnesses retract testimonies
Amid reports that some witnesses have retracted their testimonies, Malacañang will ask the prosecutors in the Maguindanao massacre to update President Duterte on developments in the case.
“I’d like to inform the public that I’m arranging a meeting with the panel of prosecutors in the Palace,” presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in a press briefing on Thursday.
“I would like to invite the President to join us in our meeting so [he] will be apprised by the prosecution team on what’s happening,” he added.
Roque reacted to reports that some witnesses in the massacre were being convinced to recant their testimonies against the Ampatuan clan, the principal suspects in the case.
58 people killed
The Nov. 23, 2009, massacre in Ampatuan town, Maguindanao, left 58 people dead, including women, lawyers and journalists.
Roque, a former human rights lawyer, once served as private prosecutor for the families of some of the slain members of the media.
He said he had been assured by the panel of prosecutors that “the case against Unsay [Andal Ampatuan Jr.] remains strong.”—JULIE M. AURELIO
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