Maguindanao Massacre: PTFOMS says it is resolved but NUJP says otherwise

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COTABATO CITY – The brutal killing of 32 journalists in the bloody Maguindanao Massacre is considered closed before the eyes o the Presidential Task Forces on Media Security (PTFoMS) but not before the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP).

Undersecretary Joel Egco, executive secretary of PTFoMS said the case was considered closed last year by the court.

But NUJP chairperson Nonoy Espina said the 11-year-old case is far from over.

Espina said the 76 suspects in the massacre are still at large, therefore justice has not been served completely.

“It remains very clear that the massacre case is far from being resolved. The convictions are being appealed, as there are civil damages by the victims’ families,” Espina said.

For this, Egco said the court decision “was final but those who are still at-large are subject to the manhunt, and we expect the law will catch up with them”.

It can be recalled that Fifty-eight (58) persons were killed, 32 of them were journalists, on Nov. 23, 2009, in Ampatuan town, Maguindanao province.

The victims were on their way to file a Certificate of Candidacy for Esmael ‘Toto’ Mangudadatu who was then running for a gubernatorial post in Maguindanao against Datu mayor Andal Ampatuan Jr., the son of then-incumbent Maguindanao governor Andal Ampatuan Sr.

In December 2019, a Quezon City court found two Ampatuan brothers guilty beyond reasonable doubt for the 2009 massacre of 58 persons, in Maguindanao. Judge Jocelyn Solis Reyes of the Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 221 sentenced Datu Andal Jr and Zaldy Ampatuan and others guilty of 57 counts of murder. They were sentenced to reclusion perpetua without parole.-Taher G. Solaiman/Newsline.ph

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