Exactly a year after bloody clash
The Senate will reopen its hearing on the Mamasapano incident on January 25, exactly a year after the bloody police operation which resulted in the deaths of over 60 people, including 44 elite police officers and at least 17 fighters of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
Sen. Grace Poe, head of the public order and dangerous drugs committee conducting the probe, said the hearing will be held at the Senate session hall at 10 in the morning.
The hearing will commence following the Senate Rules committee's decision to return the Mamasapano report to Poe's committee upon the request of Minority Leader Juan Ponce Enrile.
“It's good that the Rules Committee gave a go signal that additional hearing/s can be called, in response to Minority Leader Enrile's request to call such, citing his personal information, and possibly new evidence,” Poe said in a statement.
“Let it be stated as I manifested before, the new hearing/s will not affect or void our earlier findings. Our Committee Report has been signed by 21 members. Lagi namang may puwang kung may bagong ebidensya,” she added.
The committee report stated that President Benigno Aquino III is responsible for the Mamasapano operation.
On Monday, Majority Leader Alan Peter Cayetano said the Rules committee, which he heads, sees no impediment in the reopening of the hearing.
At the height of the Senate hearings on deadly Jan. 25, 2015 Mamasapano clash, Enrile was on hospital arrest at the PNP General Hospital in Camp Crame over plunder and graft charges in connection with the alleged pork barrel scam.
Enrile, 91, returned to the Senate on August 24, nearly a week after the Supreme Court granted his petition to post bail due to poor health.
In his privilege speech in October, Enrile said the Mamasapano incident must not be taken lightly as he demanded for a full plenary debate. He later said that he wanted a reopening of the committee probe.
“Nothing is to be put under the rug. Everything must come out,” he said.
“If we want to really be open and transparent to the people, then we must do this. Otherwise, there will be suspicion that we are hiding something and I personally think that we are hiding something,” added Enrile.