Maguindanao Massacre Essay

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November 23. 2009 a really important day of the month to all cotabatenos and a really controversial day of the month to anyone who knows about the slaughter. A twenty-four hours that brought the metropolis into darkness. The clip where bulk of the people were into a great fright. The twenty-four hours where many guiltless people were executed due to the willingness of others to win the place.

Even for a state long hardened to election force. the slaughter of at least 57 defenceless civilians on the chief southern island of Mindanao. many of them relations and protagonists of a local politician and a big group of journalists. sets a new low. This troubled corner of the Philippines normally makes headlines for its long-running Muslim separationist rebellion. But the violent deaths starkly exposed a countrywide unease: the ferocious competition for regional power among the country’s little elite of a few 100 households and kins that control an excessive sum of the national wealth — and the despairing lengths some will travel to protect their clasp on power.

The most talked about incident that happened 4 old ages ago has non been resolved until now. The barbarous violent death of 57 individuals that were merely about to register campaigning for Cotabato’s former governor Esmael ‘toto’ mangudadatu. On that twenty-four hours. the married woman of Esmael Mangudadatu. a local politician. was to subject a Certificate of Candidacy on his behalf. He was to run for provincial governor. Local journalists joined them in a convoy traveling to the office of the Commission on Election in the municipality of Shariff Aguak. The journalists were interested as it was the first clip that there is a adult male who will take hazards to hold a competition with an ampatuan in footings of running for a place. . It was a challenge to the Ampatuans. the powerful regnant political kin. The Ampatuans were back uping Andal Ampatuan Jr. . boy of the so incumbent governor. Andal Sr. . to win him as governor. But before Esmael’s married woman. her party and the journalists could make the Comelec office. the local police officers. soldiers and paramilitary forces blocked their manner at the main road. They were allegedly given orders by Andal Ampatuan Sr. . so incumbent governor and besides the patriarch of the Ampatuans ; and his boy. Andal Jr. . to kill the group.

All the victims were taken to a brow where they were executed. Their organic structures were buried in a mass grave together with their planate vehicles. Their intent was non to cognize where the killed people were. The magnitude of the Maguindanao slaughter stands as grounds of an tremendous challenge to the country’s system of justness. In this instance. there are 196 suspects. each of them charged with 57 counts of slaying for the decease of 57 people. all charges being heard at the Regional Trial Court ( RTC ) in Metro Manila. The organic structure of one journalist. which is required in prosecuting a slaying instance. could non be found. Over 500 others named merely as “John Does” in the felon charges have non yet been identified. Of the 196 suspects. 93 have been arrested ; nevertheless. three of them have accused the constabulary officers of collaring them in the topographic point of existent accused. Of the 93 suspects in detainment. 29 of them have non been arraigned in unfastened tribunal yet.

Before the test could get down. it took the National Prosecution Service. the prosecution arm of the Department of Justice. over two months to register the 57 counts of slaying in tribunal against the suspects. Here. although the prosecution organic structure did follow with its legal duty to finish the preliminary probes in at least 40 yearss for ordinary instances and 90 yearss for instances affecting public functionaries as required by the Revised Rules of Criminal Procedure. Rule 112 on Preliminary Investigation. to be able to continue with the test to guarantee that an “effective remedy” is achieved has been debatable in world. The failure of the Philippine National Police to collar the other 103 suspects. who are still at big two old ages after the slaughter. has farther delayed the test of the instance. Although all of the accused are charged for slaying in a individual incident. in finding condemnable liability each must be arraigned. tried and examined separately in tribunal during the test.

The accused could besides oppugn the virtue of the instance by subjecting requests and gestures in tribunal either to hold their names excluded from the slaying charges or holding the full instance dismissed on inquiry of virtue. However. non all gestures and requests filed by suspects. peculiarly those of powerful and influential political figures are in good religion. In this instance. some suspects who invoked a remedial right filed their requests to either except their names from the slaying charge or dismiss instance allegedly to intentionally detain the test. To day of the month. there are still 29 suspects. including Zaldy Ampatuan. former governor of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao. who have non been arraigned. Zaldy is the boy of Andal Sr. Under the Speedy Trial Act of 1998. subdivision 6. in test of condemnable instances “in no instance shall the full test period exceed one hundred 80 ( 180 ) yearss from the first twenty-four hours of trial” ; nevertheless. four of the seven “exclusions” applicable in this instance. as stipulated in subdivision 10 of the same jurisprudence. have rendered the jurisprudence inoperative.

These exclusions are holds due to tests with regard to charges against the accused ; interlocutory entreaties ; hearings on pretrial gestures from orders of suppression. or proceedings associating to alter of locale of instances ; determination of the being of a valid damaging inquiry ; and absence or inaccessibility of the accused or an indispensable informant. Therefore. the hold in this test has so far been justifiable in the domestic jurisprudence. I argue that these open-ended and wide exclusions have denied both the accused and the plaintiffs their constitutional rights to speedy test. The absence. if non deficiency of. equal legal commissariats that would guarantee that gestures and requests that the suspects filed are examined exhaustively to forestall any effort to intentionally thwart the class of justness has exposed the tribunal system as being unfastened to use.

In this instance. the suspects filed legion requests. gestures and entreaties that were lawfully justifiable in the ?§exclusions?? clause of the Speedy Trial Act. Even though harmonizing to the Filipino Daily Inquirer “the tribunal ( had ) practically holds three hearings a hebdomad — gestures are heard on Mondays in Quezon City while the existent test is conducted at Camp Bagong Diwa in Bicutan. Taguig City. on Midweeks and Thursdays” ( 23 November 2011 ) for over a twelvemonth now. there is no mark that the test of the slaughter instance could make its decision anytime shortly. Therefore. the comment by one of the private attorneies. Harry Roque that the test could take “55. 000 years” if we take as a footing that “it takes five old ages to seek a individual instance in the Philippines” ( harmonizing to one survey ) is non an exaggeration. This could in fact be the length of the test if the 196 suspects would be tried each for charges of 57 counts of slaying. Effective redress: misdemeanors in international jurisprudence

I argue that the Speedy Trial Act. in peculiar its subdivision 10. does non conform to international norms and criterions because its exclusions institutionalize holds in test of instances and thereby deny an “effective remedy” . The domestic jurisprudence and the regulations of processs that protect these rights exist. but they do non conform to international jurisprudence. The domestic jurisprudence instead has diluted substantial rights to be mere procedural rights. The UN Human Rights Committee has already held that the Philippines was in two instances in misdemeanor of its duty under the Covenant for neglecting to guarantee the “effective remedies” at the domestic degree. In its positions on Evangeline Hernandez v the Philippines ( Communication No. 1559/2007. positions adopted on 26 July 2010. UN Doc. CCPR/C/99/D/1559/2007 ) . the Committee held it was in misdemeanor ?§of article 6. every bit good as a misdemeanor of article 2. paragraph 3? because domestic redresss had been “unreasonably prolonged” .

The Committee reminded that the “State party may non avoid its duties under the Covenant with the statement that the domestic tribunals are covering with the affair. when the redresss relied upon by the State party have been unreasonably prolonged. ” Evangeline is the female parent of Benjaline Hernandez. a human rights guardian murdered by the military and paramilitary forces in Arakan. North Cotabato in April 2002. Evangeline filed the single communicating even without to the full wash uping domestic redresss. reasoning that probes. prosecution and test in her daughter’s slaying “have been uneffective and unreasonably prolonged. ” The Committee has besides observed that for “over eight old ages subsequently. at the clip of scrutiny of this communicating. it would look that condemnable proceedings initiated against the accused have non yet been finalized. ” In another instance. Lenido Lumanog and Augusto Santos v the Philippines ( Communication No. 1466/2006. positions adopted in 20 March 2008. UN Doc. CCPR/C/92/D/1466/2006 ) . the Committee besides held the province party violated article 14. paragraph 3 ( degree Celsius ) of the Covenant because it failed in reasoning the request for reappraisal into the decease sentences of the plaintiffs for eight old ages.

Here. the province party was reminded of its legal duty with article 2. paragraph 3 ( a ) . of the Covenant. to guarantee “an effectual redress. including the prompt reappraisal of their entreaty before the Court of Appeals and compensation for the undue delay” . The plaintiffs. Lenido Lumanog and Augusto Santos. are two of five anguish victims. jointly known as the “Abadilla Five” . The five were illicitly arrested and detained. tortured to squeal and after over 14 old ages of test. were convicted for the blackwash of Rolando Abadilla. a constabulary colonel. in June 1996. They were convicted based on the testimony of one informant. Freddie Alejo. Alejo’s credibleness has been questioned. In these two instances. the Committee found the Philippines has violated the rights of the plaintiffs because the domestic redresss were uneffective and unduly delayed ; nevertheless. lawfully these misdemeanors to international jurisprudence had found justification under the country’s domestic jurisprudence. notably the Speedy Trial Act. In the domestic legal model. hold is justifiable as portion of the domestic condemnable legal procedure. even though in these two instances it constituted a breach of the ICCPR.

When domestic redresss are “ineffective and unduly delayed” . the aggrieved parties can register single ailments with the Committee. since the Philippines has ratified the Optional Protocol of the ICCPR. Even when instances are within domestic procedural legal power. the province could non raise this as non-compliance to “exhaustion of domestic redresss. ” To my cognition. the Committee’s positions and sentiments have so far non been implemented at the domestic degree. While the country’s Constitution adopts the “generally recognized rules of international law” . without an established mechanism to to the full implement the Committee’s positions. even if a province is held to hold committed the misdemeanors of the Covenant and international jurisprudence it signed. the impression of “effective remedy” will non be in world.

The Maguindanao slaughter is proof that the bing domestic mechanism. despite its acknowledgment of the rights. is unable to follow with its international duties because of the chronic defects of its ain condemnable justness system. The acknowledgment of these rights in the 1987 Constitution. the codification of statutory Torahs and in condemnable processs and acceptance of law from foreign states will non hold significant benefits to guarantee protection of the right to an “effective remedy” . A well-developed domestic mechanism is a stipulation in order to implement these rights. A backhoe driver has described in chilling item how he used the excavator to bury the 58 victims of the Philippines’ worst political slaughter. harmonizing to a picture aired Tuesday. The adult male said he dug a large hole near where the victims were shot by the Ampatuan kin in November 2009. so pushed the organic structures every bit good as their autos down the cavity. “I am Bong Andal. a sure employee of the Ampatuans…they ordered me to bury the people they had massacred. ” said the adult male in the cartridge holder aired by Manila-based GMA web.

The kin allegedly ordered the slaughter to halt a political challenger. Esmael Mangudadatu. from running against one of its members for governor of Maguindanao. a hapless agriculture state in the South. The Ampatuan patriarch. two boies and several household members are in detention and on test for the slaying of 58 victims. including 32 journalists who were covering the political competition. The backhoe driver was arrested last November. while more than 90 other suspects remain at big. GMA said Andal had signed a deposition that was given to province prosecuting officers. It said it subsequently had an sole interview with him. in which he repeated the allegations made in the written deposition. The web said portion of his quotation marks were from the deposition and portion from the interview. “I used the backhoe to force the vehicles into the hole foremost. Then I flattened them with its metal arm. ” the station quoted him as stating. “Some of the vehicles had dead people indoors. so I merely closed my eyes out of fear and got on with it. ” Andal besides said he used the excavator’s arm to drag the dead organic structures into the hole. the station said.

Andal alleged in the picture cartridge holder that the kin patriarch. Andal Ampatuan Senior. ordered him to take the excavator to the topographic point where the 58 people were shot dead. and to do certain it had adequate fuel. “The Ampatuans warned me and my parents non to acquire myself arrested. They said if I get caught they would kill my parents. my siblings and my kids. ” The driver is being held by the national government’s witness protection plan. along with other informants. amid frights they could confront requital for attesting against the kin. GMA said. At least three informants have been killed since 2010. including a former Ampatuan household employee whose dismembered remains were found stuffed into a poke in 2012. Andal wants to go a province informant. GMA said GENERAL SANTOS CITY. Philippines – Lest we forget. we must remind ourselves that 4 old ages ago. 58 people were killed in one of the most condemnable slaughters in the long line of political slayings in the state.

On a searing mid-day on Nov 23. 2009. Datu Unsay town Mayor Andal Ampatuan Jr and some 192 relations. police officers. militiamen. and escorts stopped a convoy of vehicles that was on its manner to the provincial capitol of Maguindanao in Shariff Aguak and diverted it to a secluded and distant small town in Masalay. Ampatuan town. There. informants said Andal Jr and his minions peppered the bawling and imploring victims with slugs. Some 4 hours subsequently. the universe was jolted and revolted by the ghastly slaughter. Thirty-two of those who were pitilessly gunned down were journalists and media workers. Standing accused and being prosecuted for the barbarian offense are members of the most awful and influential political warlords in Mindanao. along with their confederates and devouring protagonists. Six members of the Ampatuan kin have since been arrested and are now detained at Camp Bagong Diwa in Bicutan. Taguig City.

While most suspects have been arrested and detained. many are still at big. At least 8 of those still in the getaway bore the family names of the chief suspects – Ampatuan. And while 96 or so of the suspects are now detained. all but one have yet to confront test. the procedure bogged down by detaining tactics by the defence. In that one instance that has gone on test. the attorneies of the accused have yet to show their instance after the prosecution rested on November 6 – or 4 old ages to the month since the slaughter. At least 3 informants have been killed since 2010. including a former Ampatuan household employee whose dismembered remains were found stuffed into a poke in 2012. Despite this. Justice Secretary Leila de Lima has said that President Benigno Aquino III wants suspects convicted before his term ends in 2016.

The concluding route

On Thursday. November 21. households of the media workers and journalists who perished in the slaughter will retrace the concluding route traveled by their loved 1s and carry one message: When will justice of all time be achieved? Indeed. it is non adequate to see the originators and their minions confined in their detainment cells. Paramount is requital for the victims – for the slaughter committed by the Ampatuans. The households are demanding justness.

The universe is take a firm standing on the twenty-four hours of thinking. Many are convinced that without it. the civilization of impunity will everlastingly be with us.

2009 will travel down in history as the darkest twelvemonth yet for the Filipino media with the violent deaths of 57 people. including 32 journalists in southern Philippines on 23 November – an event that has come to be known as the “Maguindanao slaughter. A Filipino regional traial tribunal today ordered the apprehension of 189 suspects linked to the bloodstained November 23. 2009 Maguindanao violent deaths of 57 civilians. which shook the media worldwide. It was as if some senators read an prophet on the destiny of the civilian slaughter instance in Maguindanao. Though authoritiess all over the universe deplored the violent deaths. the instance has lost its impulse. The famed Maguindanao slaughter instance took another turn when two members of the powerful Ampatuan kin tagged as two of the chief suspects in the November 23. 2009. violent deaths were cleared by the Department of Justice because the “existence of a confederacy was non proven”

Anger and relatives’ calls for justness reverberated on Thursday at the recommencement of the famed Maguindanao slaughter test as a medical legal officer testified that one of the victims may hold been raped before she was shot. Maguindanao slaughter had been the most talked about subject since the twenty-four hours it happened. It affected non merely the metropolis of cotabato but besides other topographic points every bit shortly as it was aired on telecasting. The people in cotabato. specially those households who had lost their loved 1s because of the barbarous violent death had been traumatized. It brought fright to us because it was the most barbarous occurrence that happened. I know that in cotabato there are a batch of incidents go oning. Like bomb menaces. snatch. violent death and the war against the terrorists but this subject was the most fearful.

To compare. governments arrested 12 suspects at the clip of the massacre’s 2nd day of remembrance in 2011.
Two other suspects considered “big fish” who each carried the P300. 000 premium were arrested that twelvemonth: Tumi Timba Abas and Dukoy Badal.
Then in 2012. eight were besides arrested. including two outstanding Ampatuan kin members. viz. : Datu Anwar Upham “Ulo” Ampatuan and Datu Anwar “Ipi” Ampatuan Jr.
But this twelvemonth. apart from non collaring any outstanding Ampatuan kin member. governments have merely arrested one suspect that carries the P300. 000 premium: Talembo “Tammy” Masukat. who was collared on February 16.


The six others arrested this twelvemonth carried a lower premium of P250. 000 each:
Nasser Guia. arrested on February 8
Maot Bangkulat. April 8 ;
Kudza Uguia Masukat. April 15 ;
Edris Nanding Tekay. May 28 ;
Mama Nomba Habib. July 25 ; and
Alimudin Sanguyod. October 18.





An 8th suspect. Maguid Amil. was killed by governments after defying apprehension in Maguindanao on February 8. Amil reportedly hurled a grenade and fired at one of the collaring officers.
As of posting clip. the entire figure of arrested suspects stands at 108.
Of this figure. 104 have been arraigned and all pleaded non guilty to the multiple slaying charges.
Among those arraigned are the eight outstanding Ampatuan kin members. including patriarch Andal Ampatuan Sr. a former Maguindanao governor. every bit good as his three boies. Andal Jr. Rizaldy. and Sajid. Considered the worst single-day election-related force in Philippine history. the Maguindanao slaughter claimed the lives of 58 people. including 32 journalists. who were portion of a convoy that was supposed to register so Buluan Vice Mayor Esmael Mangudadatu. an Ampatuan challenger in the gubernatorial race for the 2010 automated polls.


They were said to hold been stopped at a checkpoint at Sitio Masalay in Barangay Salman. Ampatuan town and gunned down by armed work forces led by the Ampatuans. Mangudadatu finally won as governor.

This calamity will ne’er be forgotten as it was one of the most important and historic go oning that happened in cotabato metropolis. It took us old ages to travel on to what happened. Mangudadatu stayed strong even though he lost most of his household member. He still continued his filing of campaigning and fortunately he won. As he won. it brought felicity to the people every bit good as the households of the victims because it gave them hope that there will be justness served. But until now there are some requests and ailments about the instance because of the slow motion that causes the household victims to acquire angry because it is been old ages and until now there are still betterment in the said instance. As the ampatuan denies about the slaughter. it is one of the factor why it is still an on-going instance. It gave the supreme tribunal a difficult clip to decide it because of their statements. They’ve been making new narratives for their interest to be non in prison but still there were some groundss that are strong but needsa really careful and intelligent survey to truly cognize who’s the existent suspect to the said offense.

hypertext transfer protocol: //content. clip. com/time/world/article/0. 8599. 1943191. 00. html hypertext transfer protocol: //www. gmanetwork. com/news/story/336621/news/specialreports/4-years-after-ampatuan-massacre-88-suspects-still-at-large hypertext transfer protocol: //www. rappler. com/nation/44427-families-maguindanao-massacre-compensation hypertext transfer protocol: //www. abs-cbnnews. com/focus/07/02/13/backhoe-man-describes-maguindanao-massacre-burial hypertext transfer protocol: //www. humanrights. asia/resources/journals-magazines/article2/1102/the-maguindanao-massacre-legal-and-human-rights-implications-of-court-delay hypertext transfer protocol: //themediaproject. org/page/maguindanao-massacre-story-index

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