By Mario B. Casayuran
Senate officials and employees yesterday commended and expressed their gratitude to the government forces who took part in the liberation of Marawi City from local and foreign terrorists who laid siege on the city for five months.
Senate Secretary Lutgardo Barbo led Senate employees in thanking the 15 soldiers, mostly from the elite 3rd Scout Ranger Battalion, who were invited as guests-of-honor during the Senate’s flag-raising rites yesterday.
The commandos, led by Captain Aris Gerero and Captain Jommel Ray Parreño, were welcomed with loud cheers and applause by the Senate employees.
Barbo said the Senate is thankful for the heroic actions of the commandos, who were among those responsible for eliminating two high-profile terrorists – Isnilon Hapilon and Omarkhayam Maute on October 16, 2017.
Hapilon was considered as the Islamic State “emir” in Southeast Asia, while Maute, along with his brother Abdullah, spearheaded the five-month long attack in Marawi City.
“In behalf of Senate President Aquilino ‘Koko’ Pimentel III, and the rest of the senators and the employees of the Philippine Senate, we express our thanks, our eternal gratitude to you in taking back from the Maute group the beautiful city of Marawi,” Barbo said.