THE Philippine National Police yesterday said all necessary measures are being undertaken to ensure the security of Maguindanao Representative Esmael ‘Toto’ Mangudadatu whose wife and sister were among the 58 people who were killed during the infamous November 23, 2009 massacre case.
“Even as he is still mulling to discuss his concern with PNP Officer-in-Charge, Lieutenant General Archie Francisco F. Gamboa,we’d like to assure Rep Esmael ‘Toto’ Mangudadato that his safety and security is paramount.
“At the local level, we have sufficient number of PNP personnel authorized to ensure his safety and security. We can also help him arrange for a permanent security detail with the Police Security Protection Group which has the mandate to provide police security detail to government officials,” said PNP spokesman Brigadier General Bernard M. Banac
Mangudadatu said he wants the death penalty for the principal suspects in the Maguindanao carnage but added that should they be found guilty for the massacre, they should serve hundreds of years in jail for the death of 58 people, including his wife and 32 media practitioners.
Gen. Gamboa earlier ordered all concerned police units to ensure tight security during the December 19 promulgation of sentence on the Ampatuan massacre suspects.
“Gen. Gamboa has directed the Regional Director of NCRPO, Brigadier General Debold M. Sinas to to heighten security at the Quezon City Jail Annex in Camp Bagong Diwa, Taguig City for the scheduled promulgation of judgment by Hon. Jocelyn Solis-Reyes, Presiding Judge of Regional Trial Court Branch 221 of Quezon City on December 19, 2019,” said Banac.
The official said that security will also be tightened at the Makati Medical Center where one of the accused, former Maguindanao Governor Zaldy Ampatuan remained under confinement since suffering a stroke last October 21.
The accused massacre mastermind was admitted to the hospital’s Intensive Care Unit from October 22 to 29. His lawyers have sought his continued hospitalization due to the possibility of another stroke.
The PNP likewise assured a continuing manhunt for at least 80 remaining suspects in the infamous Ampatuan Massacre case as the country awaits with bated breath the outcome of the trial highly-optimistic of a conviction for the killers led by the principal accused, Datu Andal ‘Unsay’ Ampatuan Jr. and his brother Zaldy.
Brig. Gen. Sinas has ordered tightened security at the NCRPO headquarters in Camp Bagong Diwa in Bicutan, Taguig City where the massacre suspects being held at the Q.C. Jail Annex are waiting for the promulgation of the judgment on the dastardly crime on December 19.
Journalists who will cover the event have been required to get an accreditation from the Supreme Court’s Public Information Office and the office of the NCRPO directorefore they can enter the camp on the verdict day.
The security at the NCRPO headquarters will be more stricter days before the announcement of the verdict with motor vehicles and visitors including supporters of the Ampatuans to be strictly checked to prevent the possibility they may be carrying illegal weapons and explosives.