SENATOR Richard Gordon, the chairman of the Senate Committee on Justice and Human Rights, will be remembered as one who tried to “cover up” the truth about extrajudicial killings happening in the country, Sen. Antonio Trillanes 4th said on Friday.
Trillanes issued the statement a day after Gordon concluded his committee’s investigation of the alleged summary executions of suspected drug suspects in the country and absolved President Rodrigo Duterte of any involvement in them.
Gordon, in news briefing after he officially terminated the inquiry, said there are no indications that such killings are state-sponsored and only a “fool” would say there are.
“You’d be a fool to say he’s sponsoring killings… he’d be a fool and I don’t think he’s a fool,” he said, apparently referring to President Rodrigo Duterte, who is alleged to be behind the summary executions.
The President, according go Gordon, is inspired to eliminate illegal drugs because he really means to eradicate them, saying he does not think that Duterte would push anybody to kill.
Trillanes, however, said Gordon cannot prove anything about the issue because he never tried to look into the matter since he assumed chairmanship of the Senate committee.
“Sen. Gordon cannot prove what he did not attempt to investigate in the first place,” Trillanes said.
He added that his fellow senator could say anything he wants but he would not succeed in convincing people who also witnessed what really happened during the proceedings.
Gordon, in terminating the hearing, said the committee already has more than enough information to come up with a report and recommendations on the issue.
When asked if the committee would recommend the filing of charges against Edgar Matobato, a self-confessed member of the so-called Davao Death Squad, he replied that members of the committee would have to discuss it first.
Gordon said Matobato is a liar and his testimony was riddled with inconsistencies aimed at implicating Duterte in unexplained killing in Davao City when the latter was still the mayor there.
He added that if Matobato is really telling the truth, Duterte should have been charged after the confessed assassin came out with his revelation in 2014 when Sen. Leila de Lima was the head of the Justice secretary.
“He [Gordon] can go on a monologue again to try to justify his actions but he won’t be able to convince the people who witnessed what transpired during the hearings. Eventually, the truth would come out and when that day comes, Sen. Gordon should be remembered as one of those who tried to cover it up,” Trillanes noted.