President Benigno Aquino 3rd and other government officials who may be responsible for the Mamasapano operation that led to the killing of 44 police commandos could be hesitant to make a public apology for fear that they would only be ridiculed, a political analyst said on Tuesday.
Father Ranhilio Aquino, dean of the San Beda College of Law Graduate School, cited the experience of former president Gloria Arroyo who apologized on national television for having called former Commission on Elections commissioner Virgilio Garcillano during the national elections in 2004.
“My point has to be properly understood. The reason that national leaders are hesitant to apologize and to own up to responsibility can be traced to the GMA experience. When she was prevailed upon to appear contrite on national television and say ‘I am sorry’, instead of receiving forgiveness and understanding, her apology drew spite, criticism and ridicule. If we want our leaders to apologize and to accept responsibility, we too must be willing to forgive, to understand or in the very least to accept the apology, otherwise there will be no motive to apologize and to own up to responsibility,” the priest said.
Aquino earlier said the president could be held liable for the Mamasapano tragedy because he allowed suspended Philippine National Police chief Alan Purisima to take control of the police operation to capture two wanted terrorists.
“I did not ‘discover’ that the President was culpable of abetting usurpation. I merely drew an inference on what the video clip of Gen. (Getulio) Napeñas briefing the group that involved SILG Roxas, SND Gazmin, PNP OIC Chief Espina and others made clear.”
The priest explained.