Palace lawyers to help President Aquino decide on IIRC recommendations

Executive Secretary Paquito N. Ochoa Jr. said Tuesday the Palace legal team will assist President Benigno Aquino III “arrive at legally sound decisions” based on the report of the Independent Investigation and Review Committee (IIRC).

In the 83-page report, the IIRC has recommended the possible filing of administrative and criminal charges against 10 government officials and three media men and television networks in connection with the mishandling of the August 23 hostage incident at the Quirino Grandstand in Manila.

Ochoa, who along with Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Eduardo de Mesa, has been tasked by the President to study the report, said the government’s legal team has started going over the IIRC recommendations since the Chief Executive made it public last Monday.

The Executive Secretary emphasized that the final decision remains with President Aquino.

“The President, after going through the report and our input, will have the final say as to what sanctions to be imposed on those found liable,” Ochoa said.

The President directed the legal team to specifically study the recommendations and specific charges to be filed against government and police officials, as well as media personalities and TV networks that were named in the report by the IIRC members.

The Executive Secretary clarified the role of the President’s legal team is to help the President understand “the legal nuances concerning the IIRC report.” (PCOO/PIA)

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