The families, it looks like, have not been getting the best of legal advice. They should’ve banded and sued collectively.
Also it is a call for the community of journalists – national and local – to lobby more actively and persistently until justice for their slain colleagues is delivered and swiftly. The families the murdered journalists left behind – abruptly and unexpectedly – are under threat of their lives and up against an entrenched local system of injustice and corruption hence understandably are in need of support outside their circle. First in the list who ought to provide that are their journalists colleagues – in print and broadcast media – throughout the country. The ball is now in their court – they’ve been talking in the air and on paper about the need for Filipinos to unite against oppressive acts; the murder of their colleagues has provided them that opportunity. Their voices should ring loud, far and wide, and more importantly as one. That voice so far is fragmented and inconstant.
The State for its part should move swiftly lest more witnesses are taken out and it should refuse to be corrupted. The reason why corruption persists is that the State takes part in it. One need not have a university degree to be able to deduce this from what’s happening in the country.
The revamped Office of The Ombudsman, on its part, should model the process being publicly-wagered about a new Philippines, one that has eradicated corruption and facilitated freedoms. The victims’ families take their cue from the State. The State that mingles with, receives gifts from, and coddles criminals is the worst nightmare that citizens can have which is why we can’t fault Filipinos of today who prefer to migrate permanently in countries where they are able to escape and recover from such a nightmare and know freedoms. Or, prefer to receive settlement for murdered family members. Alternatively, in a country that upholds freedoms, receiving out-of-court payment for a murdered kin is unthinkable. Insane.