April 7, 2015
Groups under the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan will march to the gates of the Batasang Pambansa today as the Lower House resumes its hearings on the bloody January 25 Mamasapano incident. Bayan is leading a two-day vigil to press for truth and accountability in the Mamasapano probe. The protesters also expressed support for progressive lawmakers of the Makabayan bloc who recently asked President Benigno Aquino III to answer 20 questions on Mamasapano.
The latest protest comes in the wake of a new survey showing the President’s net satisfaction rating hitting an all-time low of 11%.
“The prevailing public opinion right now is that the President has not been honest regarding his role in Mamasapano. Even the surveys point to this reality. However, it appears that the House leadership is out to control the outcome of the latest hearing. The House leadership is all set to lawyer once more for the President,” said Bayan secretary general Renato M. Reyes, Jr.
“The problem is not that the questions being asked the President are repetitive. The problem is that the President has not given consistent and coherent answers to these basic questions. Every time he makes a public address, he comes out with a different story,” Reyes said.
The protesters will set up tents and a TV monitor outside the Batasan gates. They are enjoining the public to closely monitor the House proceedings and to be vigilant against possible maneuvers to cover up the truth.
Lawmakers from the Makabayan bloc are also expected to provide updates to the protesters. The hearings can reach up to early evening since some 30 lawmakers are line up to ask questions. Protesters will camp out at the Batasan gates before resuming their program on April 8, the second day of the hearing.
“The House leadership is concerned that the hearings may turn out to be a circus. They should be more concerned about the hearings not bringing out the truth. That is the bigger problem. Our lawmakers look even more ridiculous when they are desperately trying to defend the president from criticisms on Mamasapano,” Reyes said.
“What makes the hearing a farce is the inability of our lawmakers to assert their independence from Malacanang, and their refusal to dig up the truth about the President’s role along with the US. Let’s keep up the pressure on the House and Malacanang,” Reyes said. ###