Ombudsman: Raps vs Aquino over Oplan Exodus under evaluation
Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales on Wednesday said the reckless imprudence resulting in homicide complaints filed against former President Benigno Aquino III remain under evaluation by the investigators of the anticorruption body.
Morales was asked in a press conference for an update on the two complaints filed by the kin of slain Special Action Force (SAF) members in connection with the botched “Oplan Exodus” that resulted in the deaths of the 44 elite policemen.
The SAF troops were cornered and slaughtered by Muslim fighters in the operation that took down international terrorist Marwan in Mamasapano, Maguindanao, on Jan. 25, 2015.
“They are under evaluation first before they go under investigation. Not every Tom, Dick and Harry can file a case and expect that the case should be given due course,” Morales said.
Morales said it might take time to evaluate the case depending on the complex issues surrounding Aquino’s alleged hand in the antiterror raid.
“Ine-evaluate naman namin depending on the complexity of the issue. It will just take a little time pero definitely ine-evaluate namin,” Morales said.
A day after Aquino stepped down from office, Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption accompanied the parents of the slain SAF men in filing the complaint against him, dismissed Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Alan Purisima, and sacked SAF Commander Getulio Napeñas.
The first complaint was filed by Erlinda Allaga, mother of PO3 Robert Allaga, and Warlito Mejia, father of PO2 Ephraim Mejia.
The second complaint was filed by Julie Faustino Danao, mother of PO2 Walner Danao; Celestino Kiangan, father of PO2 Noble Kiangan; and Felecitas Nacino, mother of PO2 Nicky Nacino.
The relatives of the slain SAF officers alleged that Aquino should be held liable for the botched operation because he authorized Purisima even though the latter was suspended for graft at the time, and for his failure to order the rescue of the policemen when they were being slaughtered by Muslim rebels.
The Ombudsman earlier cleared Aquino from accountability over the Mamasapano massacre and found no criminal liability because he had supposedly ordered the police officials to make the necessary coordination for the success of the operation.
Instead, the Ombudsman indicted Purisima and Napeñas for usurpation of powers and graft.
Purisima was found liable for usurpation for being actively involved in the planning stage of Oplan Exodus even though he was suspended from the PNP over a graft investigation involving an anomalous gun courier deal, for which he faced separate charges.
Napeñas was liable for following Purisima’s orders, acting as a cohort and violating the chain of command instead of reporting to the then PNP officer in charge Leonardo Espina.
They were also both indicted for violating Section 3 (a) of the antigraft law after “Purisima wielded his power and influence as chief PNP to induce Napeñas, who willingly allowed himself to be so induced, to violate the PNP chain of command.”
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