MILF negotiator finally faces Senate probe

By , on February 12, 2015


President Benigno S. Aquino III and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak witness MILF Peace Panel chairman Mohagher Iqbal, GPH Peace Panel chairperson Professor Miriam Coronel-Ferrer and Malaysian facilitator Tengku Ghafar affix their signature to the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro in a ceremony at the Kalayaan grounds of the Malacañan Palace on Thursday (March 27). Also in photo are MILF chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim and Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Secretary Teresita Quintos-Deles. (Photo by Gil Nartea/ Robert Viñas/ Rodolfo Manabat/ Malacañang Photo Bureau)
President Benigno S. Aquino III and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak witness MILF Peace Panel chairman Mohagher Iqbal, GPH Peace Panel chairperson Professor Miriam Coronel-Ferrer and Malaysian facilitator Tengku Ghafar affix their signature to the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro in a ceremony at the Kalayaan grounds of the Malacañan Palace on Thursday (March 27). Also in photo are MILF chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim and Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Secretary Teresita Quintos-Deles. (Photo by Gil Nartea/ Robert Viñas/ Rodolfo Manabat/ Malacañang Photo Bureau)

MANILA — Chief negotiator for the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), Mohagher Iqbal, finally appeared during the resumption of the Senate probe on the Mamasapano encounter.

Iqbal’s earlier refusal of the Senate’s investigation annoyed several Senators involved in the hearings of the Senate committee on public order, joint with committees on peace, unification and reconciliation, and finance conducted last Monday and Tuesday.

Instead of appearing in the hearing, Iqbal sent a letter dated Feb. 9 and addressed to Senator Grace Poe.

He said in the letter that the MILF has accepted the invitation only that the appearance should be in an “executive session.”

The move irritated several senators including Sen. Pia Cayetano who described the move as “disrespectful.”

Other sources invited in the hearing aside from Iqbal includes resigned Philippine National Police Chief Director General Alan Purisima, relieved PNP-Special Action  Force Director Getulio Napeñas, PNP officer in charge Deputy Director General Leonardo Espina Local Government Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas II, Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of  Staff General Gregorio Pio Catapang, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, presidential adviser on peace process Teresita Deles, among others.