The Aquino administration is solely accountable to the victims of the Maguindanao Massacre for the long-winded delivery of justice as it approaches its second year of injustice today, November 23. The administration has impeccably achieved its goal of abandoning the victims of extrajudicial killings in the Philippines.
57 individuals were killed, 32 were members of the press. Two years have passed, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo’s play-acting and Ampatuan’s imprisonment do not make any difference to the rage of the families of the victims. No wonder the country obtained the 5th place for the deadliest countries for journalists, Philippines next to Pakistan and Iraq. Culture of impunity remains as an epidemic as the current government which assaults journalists and the campus press. Today is declared as the International Day to End Impunity and it persistently shows that the government favors the interest of the reigning few because up to this day, we are still seeking the justice which should be served right away if only we are not subjugated by the current government.
Former CEGP Vice President for Mindanao Benjaline “Beng” Hernandez and former CEGP Vice President for Visayas Rachelle Mae Palang were campus journalists killed under Arroyo administration. Arroyo passed all the cases of media and extrajudicial killings on to P-Noy, who has been occupying Malacañang Palace and had done nothing to resolve the crimes, which gives the impression to the Filipino people that those crimes were acceptable.
Justice delayed is justice denied.
Cases of extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances are escalating, showing that this is not just some kind of isolated suppression, we are being deprived of our rights to freedom of expression.
Now, Arroyo was arrested for electoral sabotage, but it is not adequate and is not enough to pay for what she has brutally done to the victims of all the killings under her regime. Her imprisonment is not enough to get back all the lives of the Filipinos who fervently served the people, doing more than she did.
The culture of impunity is tolerable – this is what the present government is telling us by its protracted delivery of justice, because the administration does not have the balls to prosecute the perpetrators, the ones responsible for the extrajudicial killings in the country. And that will not be acceptable for the majority, only for the reigning few, only for the ones whose interest he favors.
In this, the College Editors Guild of the Philippines condemns the Maguindanao Massacre and all the extrajudicial killings in the country. We will be jointly struggling in this fight until justice is served.