Press Release
October 6, 2010

Phonepatch interview with ANC Rundown hosted by Ces Drilon

Issue: Granting amnesty to mutineers

Intro: Ces: Most senators believe soldiers accuse of involvement in three uprising during the Arroyo administration should be granted amnesty, Sen. Tito Sotto filed resolution 217 last week, asking President Noynoy Aquino to clear all members of AFP involved in the July 2000 Oakwood mutiny, February 2006 Marine Stand Off and November 2007 Manila Peninsula Siege. A total of 17 senators signed the resolution, an amnesty declares a person of a totally innocence of the act.

Ces: joining us tonight over the phone is the author of the resolution Senator Tito Sotto, good evening to you senator.

Sotto: Good evening! Yes good evening to you and to all your viewers and listeners.

Ces: well you were joined by 16 other senators in your resolution?

Sotto: yes! As a matter of fact it could have more if I have time, I suspect that Sen. Lacson will sign, Sen. Pia Cayetano will sign if she have been there, Sen. Pangilinan and Sen. Miriam. I know for a fact that there is only one senator who is not in favor although he is not violently against it.

Ces: Who is this?

Sotto: Sen. Joke Arroyo, I discuss it with him, we talk about it, the others I really do not kown, I just suspected it that they will sign but Sen. Arroyo I expected him to interpolate me tomorrow because I propose to sponsor the resolution tomorrow.

Ces: So, you will be speaking on the senate floor?

Sotto: Yes, hopefully we will able to adopt the resolution tomorrow.

Ces: This is merely expressing the sense of the Senate, are you receiving positive response from Malacanang?

Sotto: I will have to be candid about it, I haven't talked with Malacanang, I have no idea.

Ces: well I would supposed that the sentiments of the Senator will be in the are of recidivism, you have some participants in the three upsirings under President Arroyo Administration and who also participated in protest actions during the Cory Administration.

Sotto: Yes, that's a fact. To set the record straight when I discussed it with Sen. Joker Arroyo, I have said, he favors the strategy, as a matter of fact he told me that this is the right for you to do instead of resolution asking the court, he favors this he just can't vote for it, as a matter of fact he is willing to discuss it tomorrow during the interpolation period all to manifest his sentiment about it.

Ces: So, this is an expressing the sense of the senate, you have said that he prepares this rather than seeking judicial action?

Sotto: Yes!

Ces: Why so?

Sotto: Well, he believes, that this a better option than talking to the court, as a matter of fact when Sen. Recto signs it, he signs it with qualification, saying with due respect to the court and to the president.

Ces: Well actually the Oakwood mutiny case promulgation is set this month, will that be moot and academic?

Sotto: I really did not take that in consideration, we just expressing and placed it into paper what I have been discussing and hearing with other members of the Senate.

Ces: What prompted you to sponsor the resolution?

Sotto: there are many reasons, one of the reasons is the fact that we want peace, there is a peace process and the peace process is not limited to the leftist, it is not limited to the extremists, it should include the rightist, so, that's one. The other is we lack hand in the Senate, there is senator who will benefit from this and we known for a fact that they just fighting for ideology, raising their voices, they did not hurt anyone, we all those three mutiny whatever you wanted to call it, they did not hostage anyone, I believe it is their flight to give them this chance, we done it the previous Congress, then president Ramos signed an amnesty and I believe that even the constitution allows it.

Ces: Would this be an act into law or would you believe that an amnesty proposal should be passed by the Congress?

Sotto: No. the amnesty will starts from the president and the sense of the president or the amnesty signed by the president will be sent to the Congress and the Congress both houses must approve it or confirm. So, we are not doing the reverse. Therefore, I believe that we must very optimist with the resolution tomorrow..

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