De Lima: Ramos gave ‘confused’ view on chain of command | Inquirer News

De Lima: Ramos gave ‘confused’ view on chain of command

/ 06:57 PM March 19, 2015

MANILA, Philippines – Those claiming that there is a chain of command which was violated by President Benigno Aquino III for the execution of Oplan Exodus where 67 Filipinos were killed are simply “confused,” Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said Thursday.

The Board of Inquiry (BOI) as well as former President Fidel Ramos who was one of the founders of the Special Action Force (SAF) said Aquino broke the chain of command during the Mamasapano operation.

Ramos, at a press conference, said Aquino should take responsibility for the slaughter of 44 Special Action Force (SAF) commandos in Mamasapano on Jan. 25 and make an apology.


Ramos said that the EO he himself signed as then President in 1995 was meant to clarify “dark areas” on the doctrine of chain of command pertaining to the police.


“The operative principle in governance, whether in a civil or informal government, the military, police and also the uniformed forces, the coast guard, militia and even members of private security agencies, there is a chain of command that operates under the principle of command responsibility,” Ramos explained.

But de Lima maintained that there is no chain of command in the Philippine National Police (PNP) being a civilian organization.

“Paninindigan ko talaga ang opinyon ko. Yang chain of command na yan hindi pwedeng i-apply sa PNP as a civilian organization. May manual sila na ganun sinasabi pero sakop ba ang Pangulo dyan? Hindi, hindi sakop ang Pangulo,” de Lima told reporters in an ambush interview.

As to the Executive Order cited by former president Fidel Ramos in a press briefing in Makati Wednesday, de Lima explained that it applies not exclusively to the PNP but to all offices under the Executive Branch.

“Kung babasahin nyo po yan (EO), it purports to apply not only to the PNP, but to all offices of the Executive Branch of government. Sakop kami nyan, so ibig bang sabihin nun, kung tama ang sinasabi nila, including FVR (Ramos’ nickname), based on that EO, there is clearly a chain of command in the PNP, so meron na ring chain of command sa mga departments ng Executive? May chain of command all the way down sa organization ko? Nako-confuse ata sila,” de Lima said.

“If you apply that EO on the basis of the PNP, ia-apply mo na lahat yan sa Executive Branch, kasi nandun yun, all of the offices of the Executive Branch ang sakop, ang scope ng EO na yan. Can you imagine now the entire executive hierarchy or the entire civilian bureaucracy adopting this chain of command concept? Ano yan, military tayo lahat?” she added.


The DOJ chief stressed that the thrust of that EO is on the command responsibility adding that those who think otherwise might have been confused by the wording of the EO.

“I think the very thrust of the EO is on the command of superior responsibility na kapag may pumapalpak, may accountability, meron talagang mag-aapply na command of superior responsibility, but on the basis of certain conditions or standards, halimbawa kung alam o walang negligence, tinolerate ba nya ang commission ng isang illegal or irregular act in the part of his subordinates. Yung hindi ibig sabihin na dahil mag-a-apply ang doctrine ng command of superior responsibility, automatically meron nang chain of command and that is my opinion,” she explained.


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TAGS: FVR, Maguindanao, Mamasapano, saf44

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