SENATOR Francis Escudero said the admission of Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana that he underestimated the strength of the Maute extremist group would help the government find the best solution to end the Marawi crisis.
The Maute group seized the capital of Lanao del Sur on May 23 in a bid to establish a caliphate in Mindanao.
Lorenzana said on Thursday that he initially thought that government forces would be able to defeat the Maute group in three days. He placed the extremists’ strength at around 200 on the day they attacked the city. It turned out that he was wrong.
In reaction to Lorenzana’s statement, Escudero said, “I have always been against setting deadlines that may endanger the lives of our soldiers just for the sake of meeting the deadline set.”
“I, however, welcome his admission because it is a good sign that our govt is humble enough to admit their shortcomings which in turn, is the necessary step towards finding a solution to the crisis,” Escudero said. BERNADETTE TAMAYO