Go calls for justice, reconciliation on Jolo killings

Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go, vice chairman of the Senate Committee on National Defense and Committee on Public Order, today called for truth, justice and reconciliation over the death of four Philippine Army (PA) army intelligence personnel killed in a shooting incident in Jolo, Sulu last June 29.

Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong’’ Go (Office of Senator Bong Go / MANILA BULLETIN)

Senator Go expressed deep regret over the incident and pledged that those responsible would be held accountable.

Yesterday, Go paid his respects to two of the four killed Army intelligence personnel.

He vowed to provide support to the families of the slain soldiers on top of the assistance package already given by the government. 

The Office of the President has already provided an assistance package for the families of the victims.         

Based on initial reports, Major Marvin Indammog and Captain Irwin Managuelod were on a mission to capture suspected bombers when they were fatally shot near a Jolo police station by local policemen. 

Major Indammog was survived by his parents Cirilo and Violeta Indammog, partner Jennifer Distor, and daughter Marian.

Captain Managuelod was survived by his wife, April, and parents Romeo and Precy Managuelod. 

“Nakakalungkot ito. Nagtatrabaho ang mga ito para labanan ang mga terorista, sila pa ang nadale,’’ Go said.  (It is sad. They were working against the terrorist, but they became the victims.) 

“As vice chairman of both Committee on National Defense and Committee on Public Order sa Senado, handa po kaming mag-imbestiga if kakailanganin po Bagamat di na natin maibabalik ang buhay ay hustisya na lang ang pwede nating maibigay sa ngayon,’’ he stressed. (As vice chair of both Committee on National Defense and Committee on Public Order in the Senate, we are prepared to investigate the incident if the need arises. While we cannot bring their lives back, we can seek justice for their death.)

The senator from Davao disclosed that he and President Duterte would meet with top officials of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Philippine National Police (PNP) in Zamboanga City to get to the bottom of the incident.

Philippine Army chief Lt. Gen. Gilbert Gapay had condemned the initial police report which he described to be “fabricated” and “full of inconsistencies” as well as “very misleading”         

Go urged the leadership of the involved parties to keep a cool head as the President makes his way to Mindanao to speak to both sides. 

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque disclosed last Wednesday that the President had directed the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to fast track the investigation of the incident.

Go, a former Special Assistant to President Duterte before joining the Senate, described at great length their shared grief over the recent killings.

“Masakit kay Pangulong Duterte ang nangyari. Mahal na mahal po niya ang sundalo. Mahal na mahal po n’ya ang kapulisan. Sabi ko nga sa inyo kahit saang sulok ng Pilipinas kahit madaling araw, binibisita namin ang mga namamatay sa digmaan o drug ops basta nakikipaglaban para sa kapwa Filipino,’’ he said. (The incident was painful for President Duterte. He loves the soldiers, He also loves the policemen. As I have said, me and the President normally visit those who die in the battle or drug operations where ever in the country.)