MANILA – Senator Leila de Lima on Wednesday accused President Rodrigo Duterte of employing a diversionary tactic by ordering a fresh probe into the January 2015 Mamasapano carnage that left 44 elite policemen dead.
Duterte yesterday said he would order the creation of a fact-finding commission to put closure to the the Mamasapano incident that left 44 Philippine National Police – Special Action Force (SAF) troopers dead.
The president also attacked his predecessor, Benigno Aquino III, over some of the latter’s decision that supposedly led to the carnage.
De Lima, however, said Duterte’s tirades may be meant to distract the public from the so-called “tokhang for ransom” incidents hounding the PNP in light of the killing of a Korean national by alleged rogue cops.
"Sa tingin ko pang-distract lang yan eh," said De Lima.
She also noted the perceived bias of Duterte against Aquino as well as the US government, when the chief executive blamed the US’ Central Intelligence Agency for the botched operation aimed at neutralizing Malaysian terrorist Zulkifli bin Hir alias Marwan.
READ: Duterte: Mamasapano mission vs Marwan a CIA operation [https://news.abs-cbn.com/news/01/24/17/duterte-mamasapano-mission-vs-marwan-a-cia-operation]
"You can see naman the bias of the President against the previous administration and also the bias against the US dahil nga meron siyang finding na it was allegedly a CIA operation," said De Lima
Senator Grace Poe, who once led a Senate investigation into the massacre, for her part said that while her committee has already conducted an exhaustive inquiry on the matter, she welcomes Duterte’s plan to re-open the issue.
She said, Duterte may have vital information on the Mamasapano operation.
"Nasa Zamboanga din siya noon," said Poe.