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Ferrer: MILF to cooperate on Mamasapano

The  head of the government peace panel  vowed cooperation on the part of the  Ad Hoc Joint Action Group   to prevent any untoward incident when the subpoenas are served on the suspects in the Mamasapano incident affiliated with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.

Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. for his part urged the Department of Justice to ensure   no unnecessary delay  would hinder the preliminary investigation of the murder complaint  against the 90 respondents in the killing of 44 Special Action Force commandos in Mamasapano last Jan. 25.

GPH peace panel chairman Miriam Coronel Ferrer said: “Let the judicial process take its due course for the benefit of all those who were aggrieved. May they find solace as well in the various forms of assistance provided and healing initiatives initiated by both government and non-governmental groups.” 

“At the same time, let not the bigger project of putting in place the reformed institutions in the Bangsamoro through the passage of a good basic law and the implementation of the different normalization programs fall on the wayside,” Ferrer  said.

AHJAG is the cooperative mechanism between the government and the MILF that responds to criminality and terrorism in areas with MILF presence.

Last Tuesday, the National Bureau of Investigation and the National Prosecution Service filed criminal complaints against 90 individuals, including 26 MILF members, over the killing of 35 SAF troopers.   

A total of 44 troopers were killed in a police operation dubbed Oplan Exodus in Mamasapano, Maguindanao after a firefight with the MILF, members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, and private armed groups.

The complaint covered only the killings of the 35 members of the 55th Special Action Company, and excluded the deaths of nine members of the 84th Seaborne Company who killed Zulkifli Bin Hir alias Marwan in his hut in Barangay Pidsandawan in Mamasapano.

“The government ceasefire mechanism and Ad Hoc Joint Action Group will cooperate and do their best to prevent any untoward incident when the duly authorized Department of Justice personnel serve the subpoena to identified suspects who may be affiliated with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front,” Ferrer said.

Ferrer said   the GPH-MILF Coordinating Committee on the Cessation of Hostilities   had assisted the DoJ team that conducted the site visit and interviews as part of its investigation on the Mamasapano incident.

Marcos expressed elation  that    the process of    bringing justice to not only the families of the SAF 44 but to the entire police organization has  begun. “Better late than never,” Marcos said,  noting  however that  the DoJ still has to evaluate the charges through a preliminary investigation to find out if the evidence is sufficient for the filing of appropriate charges in a court of law.

He said the justice department should ensure no more unnecessary delays would hinder the preliminary investigation similar to what prevented the filing of the criminal complaint at an earlier date.

“The families of the SAF 44 had suffered long enough. The least the DoJ can do to assuage their grief is to ensure a steady progress in the quest for justice for their loved ones,” he added. With Macon Ramos-Araneta

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