PRO XI remembers fallen SAF 44 heroes

THE FAMILY of SAF 44 hero SPO1 Lover Inocencio joined in the Davao regional leg of the nationwide observance of the National Day of Remembrance for the 44 Special Action Force (SAF) commandos who were killed in the 2015 Mamasapano clash.

The Police Regional Office (PRO) XI yesterday led the regional observance of the activity that honors the police officers who were killed in the Maguindanao operation purportedly to arrest Malaysian terrorist Zulkifli “Marwan” Abdhir on Jan. 25, 2015.

Last year, President Rodrigo Duterte signed an Executive Order declaring Jan. 25 each year as the National Day of Remembrance for the fallen SAF 44.

As part of the commemorative program, a wreath-laying ceremony at the Bantayog ng mga Bayani at the compound of Camp Quintin Merecido, the police regional headquarters in Catitipan, Buhangin, was conducted. Together with the men and women of PRO XI, Sr. Supt Jose Bayani Gucela, the deputy regional director for operations, led the program.

It was attended by SPO1 Inocencio’s widow Liezel and their son Justin. Liezel is currently working at the police office in Panabo City, Davao del Norte as non-uniformed personnel following the death of her husband.

Chief Insp. Andrea dela Cerna, the PRO spokesperson, said the commemoration was conducted simultaneously in all police stations nationwide with the national headquarters in Camp Crame as the lead.

“The PRO XI joined in the nationwide activity to continually honor the departed SAF commandos,” dela Cerna said. “They were among the best of the PNP.”

“Most of them were young decorated warriors. But most of all, they were heroes who willingly put themselves in danger to address threats to our security and gave their lives in the name of peace,” she added.

“The SAF 44 died a meaningful death on the side of justice and righteousness,” Chief Supt. Manuel Gaerlan, the director of PRO XI, also said in a statement.

“Their courage and devotion will forever be remembered and will serve as an inspiration for all police personnel to be more professional and passionate in ensuring the PNP’s mandate to serve and protect,” Gaerlan said.

Last November, the Office of the Ombudsman filed a charge against former president, Benigno Aquino III, in connection with the incident for giving an order to a suspended police general to take the lead in the operation without the knowledge of the secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government.

The Ombudsman set a total bond for his temporary liberty at P80,000 in the  cases for violation of Sec. 3(a) of Republic Act 3109 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act) and Article 177 of the Revised Penal Code for usurpation of official functions.

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