26.8.10

Living with the Luneta Hostage Fiasco

Notes from the Senate Hearings on the Luneta Grandstand Hostage Taking

Snippets of information I gathered from the Senate hearings on the Luneta Hostage Crisis Fiasco:

1. Gen Magtibay as the ground commander had the power to use the more experienced RSAF which was at that time at his disposal, to address the crisis. He did not. Instead it was his judgment call to stick with his MPD SWAT team because of the team's assurance that they can do it.

2. The SWAT team were not properly equipped to execute the assault, despite the fact that they already practiced it's execution.

3. The assualt was launched because the ground commander believed the escaped driver's statement that the hostages were already killed by the hostage taker.

4. It was Mayor Lim who ordered the arrest of the hostage taker's brother.

5. The hostage taker's M16 is really a loose firearm because he had no authority to carry one.

6. Per the SWAT Team leader's statement, 8-12 rounds of fire were released only to distract the hostage taker. Nothing more.

7. The NCRPO Command was already processing a "fake" order to reverse the execution of Mendoza's dismissal order if only to facilitate the safe release of the hostages. But things turned out differently.

Clearly, the PNP's capability as an organization is short in many, many ways.

Hopefully the new government can correct this. Otherwise, we should all be packing our bags to go to Australia or New Zealand.