Coup rumors swirl

    ON FIRE  Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago gestures while grilling police officials.  PHOTO BY RENE DILAN

    Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago gestures while grilling police officials. PHOTO BY RENE DILAN

    THE Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is keeping an eye on troop movements amid reports of a coup plot against President Benigno Aquino 3rd.

    There have been mounting calls for the President to step down after the killing of 44 members of the Special Action Force (SAF) by members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and its supposedly breakaway group, the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF).

    AFP spokesman Lt. Col. Harold Cabunoc on Thursday said the military is verifying reports that a takeover of government control is supposedly being hatched by some military personnel.

    But based on initial consultations with ground commanders, according to Cabunoc, there has been no feedback confirming the plot.

    But just the same, the military official said any troop movements will be closely watched.

    “We have established an excellent monitoring system where troop movements and suspicious activities are directly reported to the leaders along the AFP’s chain of command,” he said.

    The AFP spokesman appealed to the people not to glorify attempts to divide the nation.
    He gave assurances that soldiers will support the government in helping solve the country’s problems.

    “We assure the public that the AFP and the PNP [Philippine National Police] are all dedicated professionals whose sole interest is to keep the peace and security of our country. We also continue to work together for the interests of the nation and deny any rift between us,” Cabunoc said.

    He added that the Mamasapano incident will serve as the military’s platform to strengthen its relationship with the PNP “as we work together in fighting the enemies of the State, and in performing our mandate of protecting the people and the State.”

    The PNP was quick to douse destabilization rumors.

    PNP spokesperson and Chief Supt. Generoso Cerbo Jr. also on Thursday labeled any coup talk going around as merely “rumors.”

    “These are merely rumors, but I have to admit that the PNP is hurting over the Mamasapano incident,” Cerbo told reporters in a news briefing.

    Cerbo said the PNP remains loyal to the constitutional process and that there was no need to conduct a loyalty check among its ranks.

    Some lawmakers said any attempt against the President will not prosper because the grieving public is preoccupied with seeking justice for the slain policemen.

    Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. and Representatives Romero Quimbo of Marikina City (Metro Manila), Elpidio Barzaga of Dasmariñas (Cavite), Ben Evardone of Eastern Samar, Sitti Hataman of Abante Mindanao party-list and Carol Lopez of You Against Corruption party-list were reacting to a statement by Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin that he had received reports of the ouster plot.

    “That coup won’t fly. There is no reason to grab power,” Belmonte told The Manila Times.
    “Coup plotters are a thing of the past. It’s not one bit cool. The public’s support is central for its success. No one in the public will support it today,” Quimbo said.

    Barzaga said even if the people were outraged by the massacre of police commandos in Maguindanao, the public will not support a military takeover.

    “Assuming that majority of the people are against the President, they can hold him accountable through legal means [such as]an impeachment, or filing cases against him once his term is over in June 2016 because as President, the Commander-in-Chief is immune from any lawsuit,” he pointed out.

    “What the nation needs now is social coherence, especially with everything that’s happening,” Hataman, wife of Governor Mujiv Hataman of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, said.

    Lopez called on the public to uphold the law and not let hatred prevail.

    “As responsible civilians, we must not fan the fire,” the House Deputy Minority Leader said.


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    1. Dapat lang talaga mag resign na si Noynoy…wala syang kwenta…tingnan mo economy natin, sobrang bagsak sa term nya..dapat palitan na sya ni Binay para umunlad ang bansa natin..Kay Binay, walang corrupt…matitigil ang corruption at gaganda economiya ng pinakamamahal nating Pilipinas. Hindi rin sya magkakamali, wala rin tiyak syang magagawang kasalan… Kaya please lang Pnoy , magresign ka na para maipalit na namin si Binay sayo….

    2. Roldan Guerrero on

      The country is facing so many problems which in turn reflect to every Filipinos. The Mamasapano masacre is the last shocking problem that we have, and it will stand with history as the worst in Philippine military, having the highest number of mortality in one day. Why did this happen? The tragedy is the result of our Chief Executive`s incompetence. His inability to do his job had been displayed so many times, not only in crime rate unprecedented increase but almost every points where his accurate actions are needed. We all know about DAP and how he abused it. His reluctance to lift finger on his allies while jailing and ousting his enemies replacing them with his KKKs and his Balimbing allies. AQUINO is the No.1 problem of this country now. We must join hands in ousting him before its too late.

    3. Ronaldo Valdes on

      Anyone who favor military takeover of our beloved country GOODLUCK, remember Indoneisa, and some of the african state who has militaty tribunal.. would you like to be in the same kind of Goverment. God Bless Us All.

    4. Tuluyan ninyo tangalin ang duwag na P-NOY and establish a transition government made up of civilian/military until next election,scrap BBL,abolish autonomous regions and all out war against MILF and their lapdogs BIFF and Abu sayyaf.

    5. Politicians are really like this, especially when they feel that their hold on power in in peril, they would promote fear among the citizenry about coup-de-etat being a menace of a ‘free’ society and that only politicians can provide a ‘democratic’ society.

      From where the country stand at the moment, there is no such thing as ‘democratic’ process being respected by these politicians. Likewise, at this moment they are in the process of just saving their own skins, from being court martialed.

      They are fearful of the thought that a suspension of writ of habeas corpus will bring to face justice and make them all answer for their crimes, and if things are to be weighed in, these politicians had all abused the country for so long, they need to be brought to justice.

      The worst enemy of the state are the ones hiding in plain sight and using the ‘democratic’ process to abuse the republic and to rob it of its freedom and sovereignty – these are politicians who are lawyering for the wrong leader(s) with wrong purpose.

      As one of the duties authorized on the armed forces of the republic, is that they are given the authority to execise their duly sworn duties to defend the republic against internal or external threat – one can hardly blame the timing, which is rift to take control because the country is being weakened from within, for the benefit of a only a minor segment of the total Filipino population.

    6. AFP Officers Corps, remember the the PMA honor committee who didn’t let Cadet Cudia graduate because of lying. He appealed to the President but the President affirmed the decision of PMA not let him graduate because he lied. You are smart men and women of the premier military school in the country. you can discern and you know what really happened and what’s happening….if you keep your silence, you are tolerating lies. If you are tolerating lying, then, you have violated the HONOR CODE. The question is do you have the “balls and conviction” (borrowing the term from the SAF trooper) to take a stand for the truth? (I am not advocating a coup or an uprising but a peaceful expression of your united stand in support for truth.!)

    7. noynoy is the one that has no respect for the constitution and laws. He uses the position of presidency like he owns the country and the people. Go ahead soldiers save the Republic.

    8. Aquino should resign to prevent any coup. If military takes over then imprison all corrupt officials including those in military. Restore the faith of the people. Give the poor a chance to live a good life. Stop stealing what belongs to the people.

    9. alam niyo na tunay na may TROBOL kapag maraming hakot-trak sa Makati Parking World Class garahe………..

    10. Those who spread this coup rumor are not helpful in resolving the problem of this great nation of ours. Nobody like this kind of outcome . The intention is to capture this terrorist and prevent it from doing harm to innocent country men in the future. So blame game must be put on the back burner. The President is not a saint that can know the future . But lm sure he has all the good intention in helping resolve the problem of this country. It time for us all to get together and help the government move forward . Because at the end it’s not the President who will stand to gain if the country economy grows. It all of us . Remember we are all on the same boat.

    11. “there has been no feedback confirming the plot.” Syempre no feedback, thats why its a coup. Ang bobo naman ng nagsabi nyan.

    12. legal means to unseat president is only true with effective and functional legislative branch unlike the one we have, which is composed of lapdogs and for sale for the highest bidder. who wants coup anyway…buhay ka pa naman di ba?