MANILA, Philippines – While testifying during a hearing on the Mamasapano probe, Philippine National Police (PNP) officer-in-charge Deputy Director General Leonardo Espina became emotional as he recalled the gruesome death of the 44 Special Action Force (SAF) police commandos.
Espina asserted that he wanted to know the truth and all the details on the death of his men.
“I want answers for my people so that when my time comes and I have to face them, at least I can say something… That’s what I want. That’s what I request. Fairness and justice for my men,” he said teary-eyed.
“Forty four of my men from SAF were killed in a brutal and merciless fashion. They were killed in a legit police operation to arrest a terrorist who continued to be a threat to peace-loving citizens,” he added, admitting that he could not sleep after learning how his men were killed.
Several Filipino netizens sympathized with and saluted Espina for his stand on the ‘overkill’ of the elite police. Gen. Espina soon after became trending on Twitter.
The 44 SAF troopers were among the 392 police commandos that were deployed in Oplan Wolverine, the disastrous operation targeted to the arrest of two terrorists in Mamasapano town, Maguindanao province.
With report from Cyra Moraleda