Senate President Franklin Drilon called it “unfair” and “improper” for the critics of the peace process to label as “traitors” chief peace negotiator Miriam Coronel-Ferrer and Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Teresita Deles.
“While I fully understand and recognize the public’s high emotions following the Mamasapano tragedy, Secretary Teresita Deles and Prof. Miriam Coronel-Ferrer do not deserve to be maligned in such an unwarranted manner,” Drilon, a close ally of President Benigno Aquino III, said.
“I appeal for a deeper public support and understanding of the role of the government peace panel in the realization of our goal of providing lasting and genuine peace in Mindanao, which for four decades suffered from all forms of insurgency and criminality,” said Drilon.
In the series of Senate hearings on the bloody Mamasapano incident, Senate Majority Leader Alan Peter Cayetano publicly criticized both Deles and Ferrer for supposedly defending the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). At one point, Cayetano asked Deles what side she was representing in the peace panel.
Drilon sees no reason for the public to be “too hard” on Ferrer and Deles.
“Let us not be too hard on those working for the preservation of the peace process with the MILF. Contrary to accusation, our peace panel is actually protecting the government and the Filipino people’s interest by protecting and continuing the peace process amid the tensions resulting from the Mamasapano clash,” he said.