Mother of slain guide still waiting for Manila to apologise for bungled tour bus hostage rescue

Family of tour bus siege victim vows to keep up pressure for an official apology

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 25 August, 2013, 5:40am
UPDATED : Sunday, 25 August, 2013, 6:38am

The mother of tour guide Masa Tse Ting-chunn, killed in the bungled attempt to rescue hostages taken by a sacked policeman on a bus in Manila three years ago, says her family has suffered greatly, and that there has been little progress in getting the Philippine government to answer their requests.

Lee Mei-chun, who seldom speaks to the media, said on yesterday's RTHK radio programme Hong Kong Letter that she had moved on from the agony of her loss but would continue to strive for what she described as justice.

Lee and survivors Yik Siu-ling and Joe Chan Kwok-chu filed a writ to the High Court last Thursday, seeking compensation from Manila.

They rejected an apology from Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada on Tuesday, saying it was insincere. Estrada took up the post in June, and was not involved in the bungled rescue.

Eight Hongkongers were killed in the shootings.

Lee said that when the 2011 inquest into the incident in Hong Kong ruled that the eight lives had been lost as a result of unlawful killing, the Philippine government would make a more apologetic gesture than it did. She also criticised the Philippine consulate for not receiving a petition by families and survivors on Friday.

"Last week, when we met with the Security Bureau, they promised they would continue to follow the matter," she said. "At Sunday's forum, Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying also promised that the government would seek justice for the victims. But we have heard similar remarks many times in the past three years.

"The media reported that the new Manila mayor was willing to apologise. It looks like there's some progress. But can he represent the Philippine government? If the Philippine government is really sincere in apologising, and is willing to bear the responsibility, why doesn't it compensate the victims? Why doesn't it punish the responsible officials?"