I will be mere moderator in probe – Poe
Christina Mendez, Alexis Romero (The Philippine Star) - January 7, 2016 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines - There will no confrontation with Liberal Party presidential candidate Manuel Roxas II if he attends the reopening of the Senate investigation into the Mamasapano tragedy, Sen. Grace Poe said yesterday.

Poe, an independent presidential candidate, said she would not ask for Roxas’ head when her panel resumes its probe on the incident, which was a result of a botched operation to capture or eliminate two notorious terrorists.

Poe made it clear she would not directly confront Roxas on his claim of being left out of the loop when operatives of the Philippine National Police (PNP)’s Special Action Force launched Operation Plan: Exodus on Jan. 25, 2015.

“I’ll just moderate in the hearing,” she told a radio interview.

Roxas was chief of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and at the time of the incident. The PNP is under the DILG. 

Roxas claimed he was not properly informed by then suspended PNP chief Alan Purisima about the operations against Malaysian terrorist Zulkifli bin Hir, alias Marwan, and his Filipino cohort Basit Usman.

Purisima was then suspended in connection with graft charges but he was privy to the launch of the operation.

Asked if he is willing to attend the Senate investigation, Roxas said he is.

“Why not? I’m not hiding anything. I’m not like other people who were summoned to the Senate but refused to show up,” Roxas said in Filipino.

“I read that there is new information (about the clash). If there is new information, why not look into it? There’s no issue about that,” he added.

Last October, Roxas admitted that he considered resigning from the Cabinet at the height of the controversy in the wake of the Mamasapano incident.

Roxas said many had asked him to quit but he decided to stay to assist the families of the 44 slain police commandos.

Controversy erupted after Roxas and then PNP chief Leonardo Espina admitted that they were not informed about the SAF’s plan to enter the MILF stronghold.

A PNP Board of Inquiry formed to investigate the incident said President Aquino violated the chain of command when he allowed then suspended Purisima to participate in the planning and execution of the operation.  

 

 

ACIRC ALAN PURISIMA BASIT USMAN BOARD OF INQUIRY DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT GRACE POE LAST OCTOBER LEONARDO ESPINA LIBERAL PARTY MAMASAPANO ROXAS
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