Following exactly a year after the Mamasapano encounter on January 25, the kin of PO3 Omar A. Nacionales, an Ilocano native who was one of the slain 44 commandos of the Special Action Force (SAF), continues to receive support from the Provincial Government of Ilocos Norte (PGIN).
Governor Imee R. Marcos, who earlier sought for an all-out justice for the victims, said that Nacionales’ sister, Aleta, remains to be assisted by the provincial government through a full college scholarship.
Currently a second year taking up a business-related degree at a local college in the province, Aleta recalled through a phone interview the last conversation she had with his brother, whom they considered as the family’s breadwinner.
“[Omar] reminded me that I should continue my studies, he wanted me to finish it,” she said in Ilocano, adding that she is grateful to the provincial government “most especially to Governor Marcos for the scholarship as it gave me hope to fulfil his dreams for me.”
Governor Marcos ensures that the assistance especially the scholarship grant provided by the provincial government will last until Nacionales’ sister graduates from college.
Meanwhile, the provincial government is expected to hold an honorary tribute with a commemorative mass and a wreath-laying ceremony for the fallen police commandos on January 25.
Yesterday, January 18, the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Ilocos Norte has approved the Provincial Resolution No. 173-2016 declaring that all cities and municipalities in the province put the Philippine flag at half-mast on January 25 in honor of Nacionales and the 43 fallen policemen.
Nacionales’ family yearns that the reopening of the Senate probe would bring a chance of healing and acceptance despite the encounter being a tragedy.
“[We] would like the case to be reopened, hoping this time the findings will turn out to become more relevant and bring real justice to the death of my son,” said his mother in Ilocano during an interview.—John Michael Mugas, PGIN-CMO