Palace says Marcos cautious on commenting over Mary Jane Veloso's case


Posted at Sep 07 2022 10:45 PM | Updated as of Jan 21 2023 02:34 AM

President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. is cautious on commenting on the developments regarding the case of Filipina death row convict Mary Jane Veloso, Malacañang said on Wednesday.

This came after the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Sept. 4 formally asked the Indonesian government during the sidelines of Marcos' state visit to the Southeast Asian country to give her executive clemency. 

Press Secretary Trixie Cruz-Angeles, however, said the Palace is "very careful" about issuing any statements on the matter since these "have repercussions later on."

"Like what we said, and we constantly say when it is a matter of international relations, the President will make a pronouncement only when the policy is already said and place and after recommendations made by the DFA," she told reporters during a press briefing in Singapore.

"We also do not want to transgress the sovereignty of another state. So, definitely the President will make no statement until we have some kind of further development on Ms. Veloso’s case," she added. 

Not commenting on the case does not mean Veloso is not being accommodated. Cruz-Angeles had said Veloso is still getting consular services from the DFA. 

"Tuluy-tuloy naman ang Embassy natin sa kaniya at sila nga po iyong kumuha ng abogado para sa kaniya," she said. 

When asked if developments on the case will come from the DFA, Cruz-Angeles said it will only be "recommended" by the department for now.

"If the President feels that the policy is in place, and it is time to make a pronouncement, then of course he would do so," said the Palace official. 

"Since it was on September 4 only that our Foreign Affairs had brought the matter up to their local counterpart in Indonesia, then kumbaga there’s no decision yet that’s been made."

Veloso was convicted of drug trafficking in 2010 after Indonesian authorities found 2.6 kilograms of heroin sewn in her luggage.

The Filipina, who was not given a proper interpreter, told the court that her luggage came from her recruiters.

Veloso was supposed to be executed via firing squad in 2015 but got a last-minute reprieve after her recruiters surrendered in the Philippines.