One year after the infamous massacre of the elements of the Philippine National Police Special Action Force in the killing fields of Mamasapano in Maguindanao by the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, Malacanang has found some sense in granting the fallen heroes a token medal.
The Palace move come at the heels of the reopening on Tuesday of the Philippine Senate hearing about the massacre, which was prodded by Senate Minority Floor Leader Juan Ponce Enrile which according to him “he has some new evidence.”
Now, President Aquino III has authorized the posthumous conferment of Medal of Valor to two SAF commandos who died during the Mamasapano mission, which will be commemorated on Monday.
On Saturday, Presidential Communications Undersecretary Manolo Quezon III confirmed the grant of the awards was authorized already.
The awarding ceremony may take place at Camp Crame. Among the awards that will be conferred include the Medalya ng Kagitingan or the PNP Medal of Valor.
Aside from the awarding of the PNP Medal of Valor which will be given to two individuals, there will also be the Medalya ng Kabahayanihan or the PNP Distinguished Conduct Medal to be awarded to other members of the SAF 44.
SAF members Senior Inspector Gednat Tabdi and Police Officer 2 Romeo Cempron will receive the Medal of Valor awards on Monday during the PNP’s commemoration of the first anniversary of the Mamasapano incident.
The 44 SAF members were killed in Mamasapano, Maguindanao on Jan. 25, 2015 in a mission to neutralize Indonesian bomb maker Zulkifli Binhir alias Marwan and Filipino terrorist Abdul Basit Usman.
The SAF members killed the Indonesian terrorist, but failed to arrest Usman but was later on killed in a clash with authorities.
It must be recalled while the murder of the SAF elements was happening in Mamasapano, President Aquino was in Zamboanga City which some knowledgeable sources alleged was monitoring the event.
Aquino did not attend the previous senate hearing. (with PNA)