A ranking official of the Manila Police District was caught on camera ordering policemen to disperse anti-US protesters after the latter managed to go near the US Embassy during a march on Wednesday.
In Emil Sumangil's report on "24 Oras", MPD Deputy Director for Operations Sr. Supt. Marcelino Pedrozo could be heard telling policemen to fight. He indicated that it was a shame that the protesters reached the embassy area.
"Wala man lang kayong hinuli, ang dami-dami niyan... Magkagulo na kung magkagulo, pulis tayo rito e. Pwede ba tayong patalo sa mga yan? Anong mukhang ihaharap natin sa embassy? Kaya i-disperse mo 'yan," Pedrozo told an officer at the area.
"Lumaban kasi kayo! Mga pulis kayo hindi kayo lumalaban!" he added, this time addressing the anti-riot policemen.
In a text message to GMA News Online, Pedrozo denied he ordered the dispersal.
He also accused protesters of trying to hijack the police patrol vehicle caught on video ramming through protesters.
"Wala po tayo inutos na dispersal, sila nag-umpisa na manakit ng mga pulis. Gusto lang ng driver ng mobile na ialis ang sasakyan dahil sinisira na ng mga rallyists," Pedrozo said.
"Ang nangyari gusto agawin sa kanya ang mobile, kaya sa kagustuhan niya maialis at makaiwas sa pananakit ng mga raliyista ay iniwas niya ang sasakyan," he added.
Pedrozo said the Manila Police District and the legal counsel of the protesters agreed to release 26 prisoners arrested during the rally.
He also defended the driver of the police vehicle, saying he only wanted to prevent the vehicle from being vandalized.
"Walang intensyon managasa ang driver. Natakot siya sa dami ng raliyista kaya iniwas lang niya [ang] sasakyan. Gusto lang niya tanggalin ang mobile dahil bukod sa na-vandalize, ay sinisira na nila," Pedrozo said. —with Joseph Tristan Roxas/NB/JST, GMA News