DAVAO CITY – Various groups formed a local network to join the nationally coordinated “human chain” and march to Rizal Park on February 25, exactly one month after 44 police troops, 18 Moro fighters and seven civilians were killed in a botched military operation last month.  The date was also notable as it coincided with the yearly celebration of the Edsa People Power uprising.

The network was composed of representatives from the Philippine Episcopal Church, the United Church of Christ in thePhilippines, the United Methodist Church, Missionaries of Jesus, Pagbabago People’s Movement for Change, Union of People’s Lawyers in Davao City, Suara Bangsamoro, Kawagib, Patriyotiko Mindanao, Bagong Alyansang Makabayan, Kilusang Mayo Uno, Sisters’ Association in Mindanao, Barangay Matina Aplaya officers, Kabataan Partylist, College Editors Guild of the Philippines and the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines Davao City Chapter.

The groups agreed to name the network as the Truth and Accountability Network for Just and Lasting Peace.

The network also recognized that many groups have now called for the removal of the President from power and agreed that “this could be a step the people must take if the President and his allies will continue to protect him from telling the truth.”

Network members who have joined a fact-finding in Mamasapano early February  said “residents of Mamasapano are now living in fear” amidst news reports that the people are now “back to normal.”

The network also noted that the emotions are “still very high” at the moment and “appeals to the media to be responsible in fanning the flames of war and in calling for an all-out-war in Mindanao which spells defeat for all.”

During the caucus, different groups expressed “disappointment” on the investigations of Congress especially on what seems to be an “Operation Plan Save the King” wherein allies of the administration seems to be “excluding President Aquino from responsibility.” (davaotoday.com)

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