MANILA—Sen. Richard Gordon on Wednesday said it is not right to compare the reopening of the Mamasapano massacre inquiry to the probe on the new testimony of retired SPO3 Arturo Lascañas.
Gordon made this statement after families of some members of the slain 44 elite police Special Action Force (SAF) personnel visited his office Tuesday urging him to reopen the probe into the bloody Mamasapano attack in 2015.
The families were accompanied by Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) general counsel, lawyer Ferdinand Topacio.
“Do not dishonor the 44 men by comparing their families’ request to reopen the Mamasapano investigation to Lascanas’ admission of perjury,” Gordon, chair of the Senate Committee on Justice, said.
The senator said that unlike the probe into Lascañas’ testimony, the probe into the Mamasapano massacre only sought for justice. Lascañas admitted to lying before the Senate in a hearing last October 2016.
“They went to me. I did not call them. They seek justice not vengeance,” he added.
Gordon earlier expressed willingness to reopen the probe into the Mamasapano massacre if allowed to do so.
He also said that he is also willing to invite former Pres. Benigno Aquino III among other key persons.
In 2015, at least 20 senators signed a Senate committee report holding the former president “ultimately responsible” for the failed police operation.
The report was drafted by the Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs led by then chairperson, Sen. Grace Poe.
On Jan. 25, 2015, the slain police commandos were deployed to Mamasapano to capture wanted terrorists. The operation sparked a fierce encounter that claimed the lives of SAF members.
Pres. Rodrigo Duterte previously said that he wanted to form a commission to reopen a probe into the bloody clash.