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Adding insult to injury

“ADDING insult to deep injuries” – this is how the still unresolved Maguindanao massacre is being characterized. In 2010 during his inaugural speech, then newly-elected President Aquino pronounced in all might that justice for the victims of human rights abuses and their bereaved loved ones would be served promptly. He even metaphorically used the memory of his father, the late senator, to relate with the pain the victims are suffering from. But we saw nothing significant after that speech. Many of the accused remain at large and the case is moving like snail.

We join the bereaved loved ones of the Nov. 23, 2009 Maguindanao massacre victims in their seven years of mourning as well as in their fight for justice. Our heart goes out, too, to other victims of human rights violations. We recognize the sorrow and bitter recovery process; their loved ones were taken from them in the same brutal milieu, where both government critics and innocent people are being killed mercilessly.

We will never forget the Maguindanao massacre, and so are the countless other human rights abuses in other parts of the country. We view and mourn the slaughter of journalists, lawyers and other citizens as a crime against the entire Filipino nation and humanity. The butchery should trigger national discernment and unity that will solidly our aversion to impunity.

We urge the new Duterte administration to ensure the rule of law and justice without fear or favor, and stop the bloodbath. We grieve for all the victims of violence and join the rest of the nation in praying for the reign of peace, justice and harmony in Mindanao and throughout the country. We call on our fellow countrymen to be vigilant and join all peace-loving people in the journey to fight for justice, a long journey crimsoned by the blood of all human rights victims.



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