Luneta bloodbath (3): Public Accountability



 No official wants to take responsibility for the mishandling of the Luneta incident that ended in a bloodbath and jeopardized the employment and livelihood of hundreds of thousands of Filipinos who depend on tourism-oriented establishments and services for their living.  In some countries like Japan and South Korea, officials would have resigned immediately or, worst, committed suicide in shame.  In China, officials who have committed capital offense or caused grave injury to the Chinese nation are even executed in public.

In the Philippines where a culture of impunity persists, erring public officials dig in and cling on to their jobs and perks like leeches, instead of quitting and facing the consequence of their own mess.  And this is symptomatic of our society’s enduring tolerance for officials who casually disregard their accountability to the people and the equal application of the law FOR ALL.

With no one brave and decent enough to own responsibility for the mess, Pres. Aquino stepped forward and owned full responsibility for it.  He didn’t have to do that.  Everybody knows that as president “the buck stops at his desk.”  It also sends the wrong signal that he is taking the heat off his boys and backing out of his earlier pronouncement that “.. heads will roll..” over the botched rescue attempt.

Pres. Aquino swept the May 10 presidential election on a campaign promise to rid the government of corruption.  The involved officials have also committed a form of corruption, of moral and ethical nature, with their refusal to accept responsibility for the tragic ending of the Luneta incident and for clinging to their jobs.  Their deliberate acts or acts of omission brought tragedy, disaster and shame to the Filipino nation.  The president should view the Luneta tragedy and render his judgment in that light. 

Author:  Rene “RC” Catacutan
Published 07 September 2010


 Interior and local government secretary Jessie Robredo

 Interior and local government undersecretary Rico Puno

 PNP Chief Jesus Versoza

NCRPO chief Leocardio Santiago 

WPD chief Rodolfo Magtibay 

Presidential communications secretary Herminio Coloma


 Presidential communications secretary Ricky Carandang