June 30, 2010
“Truth Commission” should go after Arroyo, Palparan, Garci, Joc-joc – Bayan
The umbrella group Bagong Alyansang Makabayan today challenged the newly-created Truth Commission chaired by former Chief Justice Hilario Davide to “leave no stone unturned in the prosecution of Arroyo and other incorrigible offenders from her regime.”
“The Truth Commission will not lack evidence for the successful prosecution of Arroyo and her officials. The evidence on election fraud, corruption and human rights abuses have been compiled since 2005, during the various impeachment complaints that were suppressed by Arroyo and her allies,” said Bayan secretary general Renato M. Reyes, Jr.
“The various impeachment complaints can serve as a starting point in the gathering of evidence for the prosecution of Arroyo, Joc-Joc Bolante, Virgilio Garcillano and Gen. Jovito Palparan. They are just some of the notorious officials of the Arroyo regime who should be held accountable along with Gloria,” Reyes said.
Bayan said that the public will have high expectations of the newly set up Truth Commission because of the many failed attempts to make Arroyo accountable in the past. Arroyo was able to quash, through her allies in the Lower House, all impeachment complaints against her. The sheer numbers of Arroyo loyalists in the House were too much to overcome for the complaints to be transmitted to the Senate.
After the 2005 impeachment, the anti-Arroyo groups formed the Citizens Congress for Truth and Accountability (CCTA) which held a series of hearings to further gather evidence against Arroyo. The records of the CCTA remain intact.
Apart from Arroyo, the militant group wants former Comelec commissioner Garcillano to be prosecuted for election fraud, former agriculture secretary Bolante for the fertilizer scam, and ex-general Palparan for extrajudicial killings.
“There can be no closure without justice. And there can be no justice if Arroyo and her cohorts remain ‘untouchables’. The evidence needed to prosecute Arroyo has been available for the past five years. We hope Davide and his commission will examine these and file the necessary charges against the perpetrators. It should not take the Commission too long before charges could be filed against Arroyo et al,” Reyes said.
“The victims of the Arroyo regime do not wish for the investigations to drag on indefinitely. We have learned the bitter lessons of the failure of previous governments to successfully deliver justice for the Marcos human rights victims. Let us not have a repeat of that,” Reyes said. ###