FVR STAYS AWAY FROM OLALIA-RAM
Malacanang, March 27, 1998 - President Ramos is keeping his hands off the double murder case filed against 13 members of the Reform the Armed Forces Movement (RAM) accused in the 1986 killing of labor leader Rolando Olalia and his driver.
During his weekly press briefing at Malacanang, the President said it is up to the Department of Justice to decide on the matter of amnesty for the group led by former Col. Oscar Legaspi.
Earlier, Defense Secretary Fortunato Abat said the 13 RAM members could be granted amnesty under a peace accord between the various military rebel groups and the national government, on condition that the offenses were committed in pursuit of political beliefs.
Former Senator and Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces Rodolfo Biazon disagrees with Abat, saying that the killing of a private individual has nothing to do with the pursuance of rebellion.
Charged with Olalia's killing are: Legaspi, Capt. Ricardo Dicon, Lt. Col. Eduardo "Red" Kapunan, Sgts. Edgar Sumido, Dennis Jabatan, Gene Paris, Freddie Sumagaysay, Fernando Casanova, Desiderio Perez and Jose Bacera, Chief Petty Officers Cirilo Almario and Filomeno Maligaya and civilian informer Gilberto Garcia.
Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi
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