MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday said former President Aquino's sister, actress Kris Aquino, pleaded with him not to send her brother to jail.
Duterte revealed this as he brought up again the Mamasapano clash, which claimed the lives of 44 elite policemen in January 2015.
“Si Kris, nag-text, sabi ‘huwag mo naman ipakulong si Noynoy’. Sabi ko, ‘No Kris, I’m not out to find fault.
I just want to know the truth,’” Duterte said in a speech in Pasay City. Duterte said he has no plans of sending Mr. Aquino to jail, even as he insisted on finding out why no reinforcements were sent to the beleaguered cops who were cornered by Muslim rebels and other lawless groups.
“Wala akong habol na ipakulong ko ang mga dating opisyal. I’m not into the habit of sending to prison the guys on the other side of the political fence or whatever. I just want to give the Filipino the truth,” he said.
The president also announced that he is no longer pushing through with his plans to create a commission that would investigate the Mamasapano clash. Duterte said, creating a commission would be redundant because the Office of the Ombudsman is already conducting an investigation into the bloody operation.
“I am not going ahead with the creation of the commission because apparently the Ombudsman has said it is still pending before them. So, I don’t want to have a multiple incongruity, especially if one finds fault with the other. So, hintayin ko na lang,” Duterte said.
The main target of the anti-terror raid, Zulkifli bin Hir alias Marwan, was killed, but at the expense of the cops who clashed with private armed groups, the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF), and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), which at the time was in peace negotiations with the government.
The relatives of some of the slain SAF troopers have filed criminal charges against Aquino. Last January 24, Duterte met with widows and relatives of most of the slain elite policemen, who are hoping to obtain justice under the new administration. It was during that meeting where Duterte announced the creation of the commission.