Palace sees fair justice in Maguindanao massacre case

March 24, 2010 12:39 pm 

By Catherine J. Teves

MANILA, March 24 — Malacanang is optimistic the court will render at the earliest time possible a fair decision on the November 23, 2009 massacre case in Maguindanao province.

"We believe in the power and impartiality of the court," deputy presidential spokesperson Gary Olivar said.

He expressed such sentiment amid rising public concern over the pace of court proceedings against the massacre suspects who include members of Maguindanao's ruling Ampatuan political clan and several of the province's policemen who are allegedly under this family's control.

The Palace isn't surprised at the rate this case is progressing.

"This is a big case involving many victims and suspects," Olivar said.

So far, authorities recovered from the massacre site bullet-riddled corpses of 57 men and women who convoyed to Shariff Aguak municipality on the fateful day to file Buluan municipality Vice-Gov. Esmael Mangudadatu's certificate of candidacy (COC) for governor of the province.

Among these victims are local journalists who joined the convoy to cover the COC's filing.

Malacanang hasn't monitored yet any efforts to slow down judicial proceedings for the case.

"We've not seen any deliberate attempt to do this," Olivar said.

He noted Malacanang hopes justice can be served before the present administration's term ends on June 30 this year.

Malacanang can only appeal for speedy dispensation of justice as it has no control over the judicial process, however, he clarified.

"It's the court's call," he stressed.

V3/CJT/mec

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