When You (Don’t) Believe
The recent tremors in the world including that of China and Chile are no match to our own country’s. With its proximity to the Pacific and to the Philippine plate, people initially nibbled on paranoia as to our geographic vulnerability. But look how our “justice system” -with its pulling-out of the two primary suspects (Zaldy and Akmad) in the Ampatuan murder- just didn’t put the Richter scale to shame, but also created distrust.
The government will drop murder charges against two prominent members of the powerful Ampatuan clan in connection with the November 2009 massacre of 57 people, including 31 media workers, in Maguindanao.
If I remember it right, the Maguindanao massacre is the most express media killing in the world. More than 60 were reported to have been murdered including local journalists who JUST accompanied the vice mayor’s wife to file a COC in behalf of her spouse. The vice mayor’s family is a known political rival of the province’s clan of Mangudadatu. The little conflict was then tackily reverberated over the news as a rampant and usual family feud in a ‘quarrelsome’ state in Mindanao.
And as if there wasn’t a more decent way of homicide from which the Ampatuans are nonetheless the clear perpetrators, the convoy packed with media men and women and the government official’s relatives were, to put it simply, slaughtered. The criminals dug graves for them with the prominent assistance of a backhoe. The crime which was miles away from my location the first time I heard of it… smelled.
With this, I joined a little movement/noise barrage for the victims with my CMC friends last year. Statements from different organizations exclaimed their sympathy for the victims, outrage against the criminals and general condemnation of media abuse. From then on, we in the college kept on recounting the issue via academic fora plus summing-up the days after the gruesome massacre transpired. With this, more issues were given the spotlight even the wondrous straight Maguindanao win of Arroyo’s ticket back in 2004, and the ties between that president and the Ampatuans.
But Agra said Saturday that there was “no proof of conspiracy,” so he gave weight to Zaldy Ampatuan’s alibi of being elsewhere at the time of the massacre.
He said Zaldy Ampatuan had presented evidence consisting of plane tickets and cell phone records to show that he was not in Maguindanao on Nov. 23, and a witness who testified to that effect.
I ask you Acting DOJ Secretary Alberto Agra: REALLY? DO YOU THINK THAT VISIBILITY AND PROXIMITY COUNT AS FACTORS FOR MASTERMINDING AN EVENT?! Is that how dense you are?! Do you think we’re as dense as you are?!
More than 100 days after the killing and this is what we get. Illogical Martial Law declaration, campaign materials diffusion, government power collaboration, and lack of people’s commotion. I’d better die in an earthquake than in the control of a ridiculous government like this.