Palace wants Maguindanao massacre case solved under Aquino admin

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Wednesday, March 5, 2014


MALACANANG on Wednesday expressed hope for the resolution of the Maguindanao massacre case on or before President Benigno Aquino III steps down from his post in 2016.

This came as the Palace welcomed the developments in the Maguindanao massacre case trial as the prosecution rested its case, at least on 28 of the accused in the brutal killings.

"The Maguindanao trial has been what we've called the 'trial of the century.' This is something that we look forward to. It's something that happened right during the campaign and we were also aghast and so shocked of what happened there," said presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda in a press briefing.

"Certainly, we want a closure; we want an outcome there in the Maguindanao trial case. And we certainly would hope that it would come in 2016," he said.

The prosecution panel has just rested its case at least on the 28 accused, including those members of the powerful Ampatuan clan.

“We’re certainly pleased that we’ve moved a step ahead. This has always been a concern for us. I think based on the SWS (Social Weather Stations) surveys that’s one of our medyo mahina ang points, although time and again we've stated that we don’t have control over the pace of the case in the Maguindanao case trial,” Lacierda said.

The latest development is a big step for the government; that prosecution has rested its case insofar as some of the respondents or the accused are concerned, he said.

As the defense starts to present evidence, the Palace official said he is sure that the prosecution is ready to cross examine the witnesses for the accused.

While the Palace has been optimistic for the resolution of the case under the Aquino administration, Lacierda emphasized that the pace of the case is beyond the control of the Executive branch, as it lies on the judicial system.

The Maguindanao massacre is known to be among the deadliest attack on the media in the country with 32 of 58 people killed being journalists. (SDR/Sunnex)

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