Palace pulls strings to clear Pres. Aquino

After the Board of Inquiry (BOI) hinted at the President Benigno Aquino III possible culpability in the slaughter of 44 Special Action Force (SAF) in Maguindanao last January 25, 2015, Malacanang appeared to be pulling strings to change the tenor of the findings.
The carnage of the 44 elite members of the SAF in the now infamous “Mamapasano massacre” has inflamed the nation on the Commander-in-Chief ineptness. There were insinuations that the President purposely allowed a sacked police general to oversee the operations as a way of regaining lost image.
Resigned Police Director General Alan Purisima, a four-star police general, erstwhile head of the country’s Philippine National Police (PNP), was simply trying to regain public trust after facing a six-month suspension with alleged graft charges. The President, a known personal and family friend, was suspected of trying to cover up the participation of Purisima after publicly blaming the SAF Director Getulio Napenas as responsible for the botched police operations.
The BOI, however, came out an official finding – amid suspicion that the Senate probe could influence the BOI final conclusion – naming President Aquino along with Purisima and Napenas to have violated the “chain of command” in the execution of Oplan Exodus.
Oplan Exodus was a police mission purportedly to serve the warrant of arrest against an international terrorist in the farming village of Mamapasano in Maguindanao. Unfortunately, the plan turned into a bloodbath that led to the carnage of 44 SAF officers. The BOI blamed Purisima and Napenas for keeping the mission for themselves and the President for allowing a suspended police general of issuing an “unauthorized” deployment of the police force.
The BOI incriminating report prompted the Malacanang lapdogs to scramble in a bid to manicure the President’s impaired image. First, it was Sec. Mar Roxas, of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) who tried to clear President Aquino. Then, Sec. Laila Delima, of the Department of Justice (DOJ), reportedly came out a ridiculous legal opinion when she opined that “President Aquino has not violated the “chain of command” because the chain of command applies only to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) being the Commander-in-Chief.”
Delima’s statement is not only ridiculous. It also implies ignorance. Everybody knows that the AFP comprises the four major commands of the country’s law enforcement agencies: The Philippine Army, Philippine Navy, Philippine Air Force, and the Philippine National Police. Isn’t it reprehensible to defend something contemptible?
Not contented, Malacanang summoned Director Benjamin Magalong, head of the BOI and the police Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, to persuade the BOI to probably edit and delete the portion of the BOI findings that implicate President Aquino from any liability of the fallen 44 SAF commandos.
By the way, 20 Senators have already signed and approved the BOI findings. Of course, Senate President Franklin Drilon did not sign the BOI report because “he is not a member of any Senate committee.” The other Senators who did not sign the BOI report were Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile (now under hospital arrest), Sen. Antonio Trillanes (a rabid Aquino supporter), and Sen. Lito Lapid (who always want to play safe)


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