Rage Against Justice Chief Reaches Abroad for Dropping Case Against Ampatuan Massacre Suspects

News Release
April 19, 2010

Migrante-Middle East, an alliance for overseas Filipino migrants’ rights group today assails the order of Acting Justice Chief Alberto Agra in dropping the case of the two prime suspects in the Ampatuan massacre case.

“OFWs, Muslim and Christians, here in the Middle East express their dismay and anger to Acting Chief Justice Agra and to the Arroyo government in dropping the case against the prime suspects of the Ampatuan massacre; we have been following closely this case only to hear the news that the DoJ dropped the case against the two prime suspects,” said John Leonard Monterona, Migrante-Middle East regional coordinator.

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He said the Ampatuan massacre victims plea for justice is in instrumental in the creation of the Muslim-Christian Alliance for Justice and Peace in the Philippines (MCA-JPP), a newly formed Saudi-based alliance of OFW Muslims and Christians campaigning for justice to all victims of human rights violations in the Philippines including the victims of the Ampatuan massacre.

“The alliance preparatory committee members express its disappointment against this whopping miscarriage of justice, but vow to intensify its campaign and now join the calls for the resignation of Acting DoJ chief Agra,” Monterona, who is also a member of the Saudi-based Muslim-Christian Alliance for Justice and Peace in the Philippines.

Monterona said though it’s not surprising at all that Ampatuan suspects would eventually be freed courtesy of the Arroyo government, what makes one boils’ blood is the denial made by Malacanang that it has nothing to do with the dropping of the case.

“In the first place it appointed the DoJ acting Chief and he is working at the pleasure of Mrs. Arroyo as an appointee and the DoJ is under the Executive branch, then Malacanang is saying it has nothing to do with the dropping of the case? Tell it to the marines! as we are not born only yesterday” Monterona exclaimed.

Monterona said if the Ampatuan massacre was a well planned crime by the alleged perpetrators, then the dropping of the case against the two of its prime suspects by the DoJ is also well planned; Malacanang calculated the impact of this and only testing public sentiments, at the expense of Agra, for future any eventuality leading to the declaration of failure of elections or declaration of martial rule for Mrs. Arroyo to continue holding power beyond her term.

“Thus we are calling on our fellow OFWs and their dependents to joins us in demanding from the Arroyo government to give justice to all the victims of the Ampatuan massacre and let the head of Agra roll out from his DoJ office,” Monterona added.

If indeed Malacanang has nothing to do with the dropping of the case, then Mrs. Arroyo could correct this miscarriage of justice by directing the DoJ to re-file the case and put the suspects behind bar until justice will is served,” Monterona ended.

John Leonard Monterona
Migrante-Middle East regional coordinator

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