MANILA - Former police Special Action Force (SAF) director Getulio Napeñas said Thursday that he was hurt by the Office of the Ombudsman's recent affirmation of the filing of graft and usurpation charges against him and former national police chief Alan Purisima for their role in the January 2015 Mamasapano operation.
In a text message to ABS-CBN News, Napeñas said that he only followed orders from Purisima and President Aquino in launching the clandestine operation that saw over 60 people killed, including 44 SAF troopers.
"Sobra sakit sa akin 'yan. Una, paano ako magkaroon ng usurpation of authority that I only acted as Director [of] SAF at hindi ko naman ginampanan trabaho ng CPNP (chief of PNP) or OIC PNP (officer-in-charge on PNP). At isa pa, Presidente ang nag-utos ng trabaho," he said.
In a 40-page resolution last March, the Ombudsman pointed out that Purisima still participated and carried out Oplan Exodus while suspended over another pending case on the WERFAST courier service anomaly.
Napeñas, meanwhile, was found liable for following orders from the then suspended PNP chief, bypassing then OIC-PNP Chief Deputy Director Leonardo Espina.
But Napeñas maintained that his actions during the planning and execution of Oplan Exodus were within his bounds as SAF director. He also accused the Office of the Ombudsman of brushing aside his defense.
"Ang mahirap at hindi maayos ay ayaw pakinggan ng Ombudsman mga statement at reasons ko. Sumunod lang ako sa utos ng Pangulo at kay Purisima na s'yang designated ng Pangulo na mangasiwa sa operation tapos kaso harap ko ngayon then dismiss pa ko serbisyo," he said.
He questioned why no charges were lodged so far against Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) fighters, who allegedly coddled SAF's terror target and killed the elite policemen. "Terorista ang pinatay namin at ang mga MILF na pumatay [ng] mga tao namin ay hanggang ngayon wala pa kaso."
The sacked police general also bemoaned how the Ombudsman's charges have marred his service record, saying: "Inutusan at nagtrabaho lang ako at ngayon, tanggal lahat pinaghirapan ko [nang] 37 years."
Aside from graft and usurpation charges, Napeñas and Purisima were also found administratively liable for grave misconduct, gross neglect of duty and conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service.
READ: Ombudsman affirms graft, usurpation raps vs Purisima, Napenas
-- With a report from Maan Macapagal, ABS-CBN News