Justice will be served to the victims of the Maguindanao Massacre following the furlough was given to the primary suspect and former Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao governor Zaldy Ampatuan, the Palace said Friday.
“We will make sure that there will be justice to the victims of the Maguindanao Massacre,” Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque said Friday in a radio interview.
He made the statement even as Maguindanao Rep. Zajid Mangudadatu on Friday denounced a court ruling allowing Ampatuan to attend the wedding of his daughter last Tuesday.
Mangudadatu questioned the order of Quezon City Judge Jocelyn Solis-Reyes allowing Ampatuan to attend the wedding of his daughter Bai Nor Aila Kristina Ampatuan at Sofitel Manila.
Ampatuan attended the wedding from 4 pm to 7 pm on Aug. 21.
Roque, who once served as a lawyer to some of the massacre victims’ families, said the fiscals and even the Palace opposed the furlough given to Ampatuan.
“[First], it was objected to by the fiscals and the Palace. Second, the Palace found it unacceptable to give the furlough. And third, there is no implication that even with the furlough, Zaldy will be absolved,” Roque said.
He said the decision on the case would be based on the evidence.
Asked about the development on the case in the Supreme Court, he said many of the cases were still being investigated, but there already were decisions to absolve certain individuals although none of those accused had been charged as guilty.
“Well, the only mandate given by the President to the prosecutors is that he wishes that someone will be read of the charges this year,” he said.
In a press briefing on Thursday, Roque said Duterte was dismayed that a court allowed Ampatuan to leave jail so he could attend his daughter’s wedding.
Roque had earlier said that the furlough given would have no bearing on the case.
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