MANILA, Philippines – Maguindanao Representative Esmael ‘Toto’ Mangudadatu is requesting for heightened security measures in the upcoming promulgation of the Ampatuan Massacre happening on Thursday (December 19).
Mangudadatu allegedly received reports that the Ampatuans, the primary suspects in the case, are plotting a scene to defer the proceedings at Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City.
Mangudadatu, who lost his wife and children in the massacre, fears of another delay in their quest for justice should it happen.
“Nag-uusap daw itong nasa loob na parang hindi daw sila papayag na mabasahan sila ng [hatol] (Those accused inside the jail are allegedly talking to each other about not allowing the reading of the verdict),” Mangudadatu said.
“Sabi ko, ‘Ginawa nila iyan, so anong gusto nilang gawin?’ Baliktarin ang mundo ng hustisya? (Well, they committed the crime, what else do they want to happen? Reverse the principles of justice?)” he added.
Thus, he requests authorities to enforce heightened security measures at the premises of the Camp Bagong Diwa to thwart any violent act of the Ampatuans.
In case the court rules against them, Mangudadatu warns of quitting.
“Ito’y pinakasukatan ng hustisya ng Pilipinas itong Maguindanao Massacre, (The Maguindanao Massacre has served as parameter on the quality of justice system in the Philippines),” the lawmaker said.
“Kapag walang na-convict dyan, sinasabi ko, aalis ako pagka-congressman, (If no one is convicted in the case, I am telling you. I will quit my position as congressman),” he added.
Mangudadatu, still, remains positive that along with the families of the victims, they will be served justice this time.
He maintained that each piece of evidence is strong and enough for conviction.
“Malinaw naman ito. Wala namang kakayahang mag-utos doon sa operator ng backhoe na sige maghukay ka dyan at ilibing mo ang mga buhay, ang mga pinatay, (The evidence is clear. No person can control and order the backhoe operator to dig a pit and bury all the victims, dead and alive,)” he stressed referring to the powerful Ampatuan clan in Maguindanao. – MNP (with details from Dante Amento)