The combined factual findings and evaluation of the Board of Inquiry and the Senate thus far have as a whole validated where the buck really stops in the Mamasapano incident.
The incumbent President is legally vulnerable for violating the anti-graft and corrupt practices law for causing undue injury to anybody, including the government, and in giving somebody, worse a suspended public official, unwarranted preference through manifest partiality.
He is also liable for inducing or influencing another public officer to perform an act constituting a violation of rules and regulations duly promulgated by competent authority or an offense in connection with the official duties of the latter, or allowing himself to be persuaded, induced, or influenced to commit such violation or offense.
The incumbent President has also openly breached the code of ethical standards for public officials for his acts and omissions. He is also liable for obstruction of justice by misleading, confusing & unleashing a contrived wild goose chase and spinning a web of contradictory and inconsistent statements on his role, privity and participation in Oplan Exodus.
Additionally, the incumbent President has induced and even sanctioned usurpation of authority by a suspended official and committed contemptuous acts in disrespect even defiance of a lawful order of the courts.
He cannot hide under the hairsplitting spin of the academic nuance between a commander-in-chief and a chief executive. The Constitution, law & relevant domestic and international jurisprudence declare unequivocally that as both head of state and head of government, he is ultimately accountable. He is the Commander-in-Chief of “ALL the armed forces” of the State.
The strawman’s argument about the seemingly debatable application of command responsibility leading up to the desk of the incumbent President begs the question of universal accountability of public officers who have been bestowed the public trust.
At the end of the day, it is now indubitable that the incumbent President will be hard put to overcome the by and large clear, candid and credible findings of fact that constitute open violations of laws, the Constitution and unrepentant betrayal of public trust.
Edre U. Olalia
NUPL Secretary General
National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers (NUPL)
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Central District, Quezon City, Philippines
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