At the rites marking the 115th anniversary of the Philippine Navy, President Aquino announced a P75-billion upgrade for the service. It is a necessary investment, but hardly sufficient. In terms both absolute (number of ships in service) and relative (in proportion to the size of the archipelago), the Navy is the weakest in the region. But at least the country’s naval force seems to have finally sailed out of the doldrums of fiscal and strategic neglect.
By Ramon Farolan
As we enter into Holy Week, a time for reflection, my thoughts are with the Navy personnel who, two weeks ago, were placed under arrest by virtue of a court order issued by a Manila Regional Trial Court.
By Ramon Farolan
On Sept. 27, 1995, Ensign Philip A. Pestaño, a 1993 graduate of the Philippine Military Academy was discovered dead aboard the BRP Bacolod City inside his stateroom. He had a single bullet gunshot wound to the right temple.
By Noralyn Mustafa
Finally, After 16 years, Navy Ensign Philip Pestaño will get justice. Sixteen years is a long time for the government to verify something that we in Sulu and Tawi-Tawi already knew right after news of Pestano’s murder broke out. The Senate and the United Nations found out the truth about the murder only after finishing their own investigations, but their findings amounted to nothing under the administration of Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, and it had to take a new ombudsman, Conchita Carpio-Morales, an appointee of President Aquino, to right something heartrending and unjust.
Sixteen years and four months. That’s how long it has taken the death of Philippine Navy Ensign Philip Pestaño to be recognized for what it has been all this time, except to the suspiciously blinkered eyes of his superiors and peers in the Navy: a case not of suicide, as the official and much-peddled version went, but of cold-blooded murder.
By Juan L. Mercado
Can a ramrod-straight ombudsman make a difference? Look at the unresolved 16-year-old murder of Navy Ensign Philip Pestaño. Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales on Thursday filed murder charges against 10 Navy officers. Six are still in active service.