MANILA — A Palace official on Thursday said there is no reason why the Aquino administration should not consider Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas an ally.
President Benigno Aquino III and Roxas belong to the ruling Liberal Party (LP).
”Wala naman po tayong napapatunayan o nakikitang mahalagang dahilan para hindi sabihin ang bagay na iyan [na siya ay “tunay at mapagkakatiwalaang kaalyado”] (Nobody can prove or give meaningful reason to say that [Roxas is not a trusted ally]),” Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said.
Coloma’s reaction was made when asked about how President Benigno Aquino III felt when he learned that the police’s Board of Inquiry (BOI) requested Roxas to relay to the President its request for an interview regarding the Mamasapano incident.
News reports quoting Philippine National Police- Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG) chief Police Director Benjamin B. Magalong, the head of police-formed BOI, said Roxas has admitted that he forgot to tell the President the BOI’s request because of his work load.
Malacanang has questioned the BOI conclusion that says Aquino broke the chain of command rule even as the report accepted the fact that the President has the prerogative who to directly communicate with.
A day after the BOI report was made public Friday last week, Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda, in a statement, said the report “was thorough in scope and independent in nature” and that “the narration of facts was exhaustive and provides a sober basis for understanding what transpired.”
”In gathering the facts, the BOI should have allowed the facts to speak for themselves,” he said stressing the Palace stance regarding the issue on the chain of command.
On Wednesday, a Palace official confirmed reports that the President met with police and Cabinet officials in Malacanang Tuesday.
”Yes we can confirm that the President met with PNP OIC Deputy Director (General Leonardo) Espina, Director Magalong, and (Directorate for Integrated Police Operations executive officer for Eastern Mindanao) C/Supt (John) Sosito yesterday afternoon, along with other Cabinet officials,” Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte said in a statement.
”The President met them to thank them for their efforts and to give them the opportunity to clarify any matters,” she added.