Duterte approves Medal of Valor for 42 of SAF44

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(File Photo) Arrival honors for the fallen Special Action Force (SAF) troopers. The Mamasapano clash killed 44 police commandos, 18 rebels, and four civilians.

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — As promised last month, President Rodrigo Duterte signs the approval to give the highest honor to members of the police's elite force who were killed during a botched Mamasapano anti-terror raid two years ago.

Duterte signed on Wednesday the approval of the conferment of the Philippine National Police Medal of Valor (Medalya ng Kagitingan) to the remaining 42 ill-fated Special Action Force (SAF) personnel who were gunned down in the Maguindanao town, according to a Palace statement released on the same day.

Two SAF members had already been given the award last year, namely Sr. Insp. Gednat Tabdi and PO2 Romeo Cempron. The Medal of Valor is the highest award that can be given to a police officer.

It can be recalled that the President had met with the families of the slain commandos in January during a dialogue on the occasion of the raid's second anniversary.

During the dialogue, the President underscored the importance of recognizing the heroism of not only two but all of the 44 fallen policemen.

The 42 officers were only given the PNP Distinguished Medal (Medalya ng Kabayanihan) award. 

With the President's approval, their posthumous award will be upgraded to the Medal of Valor "in recognition of their acts of conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of life and limb above and beyond the call of duty."

The 42 new awardees are as follows:

  • Chief Insp. Ryan Pabalinas
  • Chief Insp. Max Jim Tria
  • Chief Insp. John Garry Erana
  • Chief Insp. Cyrus Anniban
  • Sr. Insp. Joey Gamutan
  • Sr. Insp. Rennie Lumasag Tayrus
  • SPO2 Lover Ladao Inocencio
  • SPO1 Rodrigo Fernandez Acob Jr.
  • SPO1 Vrgel Serion Vllanueva
  • SPO1 Noel Onangey Golocan
  • SPO1 Andres Duque Jr.
  • SPO1 Junrel Kibete
  • SPO1 Victoriano Acain Jr.
  • SPO1 Robert Allaga
  • SPO1 Jedz-in Asjali
  • SPO1 John Lloyd Sumbilla
  • PO3 Amman Esmula
  • PO3 Romeo Senin II
  • PO3 Chum Agabon
  • PO3 Glenn Bedua
  • PO3 Richelle Baluga
  • PO3 Noel Balaca Jr.
  • PO3 Joel Dulnuan
  • P03 Walner Danao
  • PO3 Godofredo Cabanlet
  • PO3 Franklin Danao
  • PO3 Jerry Kayob
  • PO3 Noble Kiangan
  • PO3 Ephraim Mejia
  • PO3 Omar Nacionales
  • PO3 Rodel Ramacula
  • PO3 Roger Cordero
  • PO3 Peterson Indongsan Carap
  • PO3 Nicky de Castro Nacino Jr.
  • PO2 Russel Bilog
  • PO2 Windel Candano
  • PO2 Loreto Capinding II
  • PO2 Gringo Cayang-o
  • PO2 Mark Lory Clemencio
  • PO2 Joseph Sagonoy
  • PO2 Oliebeth Viernes
  • PO2 Angel Chocowen Kodiamat