But isn’t the Ombusdman’s suspension enough, you would probably ask.
The problem is that in the Philippines even if a court has already detained or convicted certain public officials, they are still allowed to function. Take the case of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, former Congressman Romeo Jalosjos and even Senator Antonio Trillanes when he was under military detention. Instead of clarifying things, our laws have created a fog of uncertainty that enables high public officials to continue to function even while under preventive suspension or detention.
In this case, the results were tragic. There was no one, operationally on top of Oplan Exodus, who could deal directly with the military chief when urgent help was needed.
The President had earlier ordered Napenas to “coordinate” with the military but Napenas said he decided to forego prior coordination and took Purisima’s advice to inform the military about the operation when it was underway.
Why DILG Secretary Mar Roxas was also not informed beforehand was obvious. It was Roxas who had implemented Purisima’s suspension order.
As for Espina, operationally he did not have to know about Oplan Exodus because he was a mere OIC.