The Manila Collegian vehemently condemns the unjust and brutal massacre of the Filipino people in Maguindanao!
Considered to be the worst crime in the history of news media, the Maguindanao massacre has hastily made the Philippines the most dangerous place for journalists. And as if adding insult to the injury, the heinous crime openly underscored the inefficiency of the government to readily act and serve justice where it is due.
The victims of the said massacre were about to file a certificate of candidacy for Esmael Mangudadatu, vice mayor of Buluan. As part of the national elections in 2010, Mangudadatu was challenging Andal Ampatuan Jr., son of incumbent Maguindanao governor Datu Andal Ampatuan Sr., in the forthcoming gubernatorial election. Reports reveal that the killed victims included Mangudadatu’s wife, his two sisters, lawyers, aides, and several journalists.
It becomes irrefutable that the recent mass murder was driven by the past and incumbent administration’s schemed toleration to such grave crimes. In actuality, there are records of similar crimes that occurred under the Arroyo regime—little crimes, so to speak. And it is just now that the government actually addressed the issue, with dawdling pace, that is. Is a large number of victims a prerequisite for action from the government? Does the government need to see hundreds or thousands of victims of political killings prior to taking a stand against these crimes? Prior to condemning these political killings? The act of killing one person just to gain an advantage over others is just as inhumane as killing more than 57 people to wipe out a political rival.
The crime does not just speak of the power play in Maguindanao, it speaks for the whole country as well. These crimes should not go unpunished!
This atrocity simply highlights that people in power can do anything they want just to preserve their position—the question whether they deserve the seat or not is utterly forgotten.
The innocent victims of the Maguindanao massacre never stood a chance. Without abrupt and proper action from the government, the list of death tolls from political killings and human rights violations would never reach an end.
Thus, The Manila Collegian strongly demands for the transparent, unbiased, and immediate prosecution of the perpetrators of this overwhelming massacre and its sheer brutality. This massacre should be the last of its kind. We call for cleaner and fairer elections in 2010—no more brutality, no more injustice!
Stop the political killings!