AFP defends hospital confinement of Ampatuan

July 6, 2010 9:59 pm 

MANILA, June 6 – The Armed Forces of the Philippines on Tuesday justified the confinement of former Maguindanao Gov. Andal Ampatuan Sr, a suspect in the Maguindanao massacre , at the AFP Medical Center, formerly known as the V. Luna Hospital.

In a press briefing, AFP spokesman Brig. Gen. Jose Mabanta clarified that the military hospital has previously attended to the health care of enemies of the state from the Communist Party of the Philippines/New People’s Army.

“Our medical facilities are opened for members of the armed forces as well as enemies. There have several instances when we were treating members, wounded members of the CPP/NPA in V Luna. That has happened several times before,” said Mabanta.

Ampatuan was rushed to the military hospital last Monday for Herpes Zoster.

Mabanta said that the military would not be in charge in the security of Ampatuan but the Philippine National Police, to whom the AFP turned over Ampatuan since his arrest last year.

“Andal Ampatuan Sr. has already been turned over to the Philippine National Police, as such we have lost jurisdiction and responsibility. At this point the facilities that are being used are only the medical facilities of V Luna, that is only our responsibility,” said Mabanta.

He said there was no need to raise the alert status at the AFP Medical Center, adding that its military installations, including the military hospital, were secured.

“V. Luna is a military camp which is also a medical facility so I would suppose that aside from the good medical facilities and doctors that can treat him, the place is also secured as well,” said Mabanta.(PNA) RMA/VR/utb

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