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Home Columns JGL Eye Clan’s Alibi in Massacre Will Not Wash
Clan’s Alibi in Massacre Will Not Wash PDF Print E-mail
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Columns - JGL Eye
Written by Joseph G. Lariosa   
Thursday, 03 December 2009 08:52


JGL Eye

By JOSEPH G. LARIOSA

(© 2009 Journal Group Link International)

 

 

To those much is given, much is expected. – Luke 12:48

 

 

C HICAGO, Illinois (JGLi) – The last story written by Alejandro “Bong” Reblando published in the MANILA BULLETIN was over the triumphant homecoming in General Santos of boxing’s living legend Manny Pacquiao.

 

It will not, therefore, be a bad idea, for Mr. Pacquiao to return the favor of his homeboy Mr. Reblando’s effort of promoting his overseas triumphs by helping morally and financially Mr. Reblando and 30 other media members, who were brutally massacred by a band of killers reportedly led Datu Unsay Mayor Andal Ampatuan, Jr. of Maguindanao province.

 

When you take a look at it, Mr. Pacquiao owes it to the media, in general, for promoting his fights and his product endorsements that earned him tens of millions of dollars.

 

I don’t want Mr. Pacquiao to be as generous as Elvis Presley, who would buy houses and Cadillacs to his very close friends and would donate to charities to the tune of about $2-million every year during his heyday.

 

I suggest Mr. Pacquiao contribute at least to the scholarship funds of the orphans of the victims of the massacre, particularly the slain journalists that we, in the United States, are trying to help.

 

After all, according to the Bible (Luke 12:48), ‘For everyone, who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one, who has been entrusted with much, much will be asked.’

 

The 100,000 pesos ($2,000) that the Philippine government had given away to each of the 57 massacre victims are just enough to cover the funeral expenses of each victim.

 

Because newspaper publishers and radio and television owners and other outlets do not buy hazard insurance coverage for their reporters, correspondents and photographers, the orphans of the slain journalists have nothing to leave behind to their survivors.

 

ANTI-TRUST LEGISLATION

 

I just hope senators and congressmen can pass some form of an anti-trust legislation that will allow media companies or press organizations to buy insurance coverage for their staff members or organization members.

 

Ilocos Rep. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. must have come across with the proposal that was floated around during the reception of former President Tony Antonio of the National Press Club of the Philippines hosted by the NPC Philippines-U.S.A. four years ago in Chicago for the need of some kind of insurance coverage for journalists covering the “danger zones” when the young Marcos suggested the provision of insurance coverage for journalists.

 

As to the proposal of arming journalists, this is the last thing they need.

 

What journalists need is defensive training done by war correspondents during the Iraq War, where they are embedded with the troops. They would need helmets and bullet-proof vests and perhaps night goggles but not firearms because they are not supposed to be in the frontlines but maybe alongside, if not, the rear guard of battles.

 

In other words, if journalists are not escorted by a police or military posse, as when they accompanied the wife of Vice Mayor Ismael “Toto” Mangundadatu, they should not have joined the convoy.

 

And speaking about the legal moves of the Ampatuan clan in the world’s grisliest wholesale massacre of journalists, will someone please tell the Ampatuans that their alibi that they were not at the crime scene will automatically exculpate them?

 

MURDER BY LONG-DISTANCE

 

H aven’t they heard of the unanimous ruling of the Philippine Supreme Court in the case of former concurrent Defense and Justice Secretary Oscar Castelo (G.R. No. L-10774, 1964, People vs. Oscar Castelo, et. al) that the absence of an accused in the scene of the crime will not rule out conspiracy?

 

If not, perhaps, the clan should ask from one of their 40 defense lawyers, who can tell them that unarguably the most-powerful Cabinet official of the Quirino Administration was still sent to rot in prison for life for murder even if after Secretary Castelo used the alibi that he was out of the country at the time of the murder.

 

 

According to the Ampatuans, they have proof of plane tickets that they were in Manila when the massacre happened.

 

True, and so was Secretary Castelo, who also had a plane ticket to Korea. Mr. Castelo instructed his nephew and defense department agent Augusto Melencio and his hatchet man, Bienvenido Mendoza alias “Ben Ulo, before boarding the plane for Korea, "Huwag lang hindi ninyo mapatay si [Manuel P.] Monroy bago ako dumating." (Don't fail to kill [Manuel P.] Monroy before my return) to which Ben Ulo replied, "Huwag kang mag-alala, halos patay na siya" (Don't you worry, he is as good as dead.).

 

A man-to-man “hit” order might be the order of the day at the time when cell phone and other Internet means of communications were not yet even a speck of imagination. But not in this day and age when the abduction and kidnapping and murder of publicist Salvador “Bubby” Dacer and Dacer’s driver, Emmanuel Corbito, were carried out by cell phone text and voice mail message instructions.

 

If the Ampatuans could not present a more convincing alibi, the 40 battery of lawyers they hired will be cancelled out by Lincolnian motto: "If I am right, time will prove it. If I am not right, ten angels swearing I am right will not make it so." (lariosa_jos@sbcglobal.net)

 

© opyright 2009 The Journal Group Link International. The contents provided in the JGLi may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or otherwise distributed without the prior written authority of the Journal Group Link International.

 

(Editor’s Note: Watch out for the upcoming outlet-oriented, subscription-based website of Journal Group Link International that guarantees originally sourced stories, features, photos, audios and videos and multi-media contents.)

 

 


Last Updated on Thursday, 03 December 2009 08:56
 

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