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Palace to Sison: Come home, face the music

September 06, 2019 - Friday 3:09 PM by Funny Pearl A. Gajunera

Article Banner Image File photo of Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) founding chair Jose Maria Sison shaking hands with then-Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus G. Dureza in Rome on January 19, 2017. Photo by TIZIANA FABI / AFP

Malacañang on Friday urged Communist Party of the Philippines (CCP) founding chair Jose Maria Sison to return to the Philippines and “face the music” on the “Inopacan Massacre” that took the lives of hundreds of people in Leyte.

This after Manila Regional Trial Court President Judge Thelma Bunyi-Medina issued a warrant of arrest for Sison and 37 other CCP members for the 1985 mass execution of those the rebels suspected of having ties with the government.

The mass grave of the victims were discovered in 2006.

According to accounts of the military and witnesses, most of the victims bore brutal marks of crushed skulls still wrapped with blindfolding cloth.

They suffered severe flesh wounds and broken bones even before they were hammered down with multiple bullet shots.

“We were informed of the issuance of a warrant of arrest by the Manila Regional Trial Court against Mr. Jose Maria Sison, founder of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), as well as 37 other members of the organization, for the mass execution of hundreds of our countrymen in Leyte, dubbed as the Inopacan Massacre,” Presidential Spokesperson and Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo said.

“Like in any other case pending before any court of law, the Office of the President respects the decision of Presiding Judge Thelma Bunyi-Medina in relation to the mass purging brought about by the armed wing of the CPP, the New People’s Army (NPA), in the eighties,” he added.

Panelo said Sison and the other accused will have their day in court as “the law is no respecter of any transgressor and prosecution therefore must proceed in accordance thereof.”

“We are one with the families and loved ones of the victims in calling for justice, the warrant of arrest shall be served as directed upon us by the Judiciary,” he said.

Panelo said Sison “should unchain himself from his exile and face the music.”

“His illusive if not illusory dream of wresting political power from the present dispensation should give way to a principled and courageous stand to face trial. He is welcome to come home to avail of his constitutional right to confront his accusers and prepare for his defense,” he added.