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News About Manila Hostage Taking

Updated on March 25, 2011
Philippine Police during the Manila Hostage Taking
Philippine Police during the Manila Hostage Taking

Manila Hostage Taking

August 23, 2010, ex-cop and former senior inspector Rolando Mendoza who has been charged by the office of the obudsman guilty of extorting money from chef Christian Kalaw, boarded a bus with 25 Hong Kong tourists and made them hostages in attempt to be reinstated into the police force. The hostage-taker and 8 Hong Kong nationals died during this tragic event.

There has been so much criticism of the Philippine SWAT team and their efforts in neutralizing the situation and saving the hostages. And today, Hong Kong and Chinese officials are said to be  discouraging their residents to travel to the Philippines.

Rolando Mendoza, The hostage taker who is an ex-cop
Rolando Mendoza, The hostage taker who is an ex-cop

Rolando Mendoza

Rolando Mendoza was a high-ranking police officer and was even decorated 17 times for honor and bravery. He was even awarded as one of "Ten Outstanding Policemen of the Philippines" by Jacees International.

It was in 2008 when a certain chef Christian Kalaw accused him and other police officers of extorting money from him, planting methampethamine in his car and forcing him to swallow the drugs. The office of the ombudsman found Rolando Mendoza guilty of this and was relieved from his position and disqualified him from retirement benefits and government service.

Mendoza claimed that the there was no fair trial and that he is innocent from the accusations. This is what made him board that bus that day in hopes that he would be given fair trial and reinstated into his position in the Philippine National Police.

Philippine Police Trying to break the window of the bus
Philippine Police Trying to break the window of the bus

My Personal Reaction

I personally hated his actions and its obvious effects to the tourism and economy of the Philippines. There were so many other things he could have done that did not involved using force in order to find justice for his situation. 

This is an act of evil and is not a racial thing at all. All over the internet criticism of the Philippine government and police force are rising and there have been a lot of racial slurs and comments. We should understand that his kind of thing can happen anywhere. Although it is true that the decisions of the police officials in the scene could have done so much more and they do need a lot more training when it comes to critical situations such as hostage-takings.

All in all, this event is truly saddening. I continue to hope for peace and understanding from the Chinese people and government and also that no such thing ever happens again here and in any other place in the world.


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    • profile image

      faisah diongcat 7 years ago

      According to the reports in

    • profile image

      norte 7 years ago


    • profile image

      ems 7 years ago

      everything is a mess..

    • profile image

      ariel 7 years ago

      but for me, the one to be blame also is the driver! why? because he must be aware that it is a private bus (trip) so there's no need for someone who will guide them for their security. why did he let mendoza enter the bus?

    • Jimmy Jones profile image

      Jimmy Jones 7 years ago from Hear and oh yeah...i'm here too!

      I totally agree that this is not really a Filipino incident. This is not something that happens just to Filipinos, it can happen anywhere.

      The problem that I do see are two fold.

      1. The local Barangay operate in their own little Theifdoms (a leftover sin of Ferdinand Emmanuel Edralin Marcos I have read) and

      2. The fact that accusations, especially of the criminal kind are not quick to be vindicated or condemned in a court of law.

      The fact is Accusations can get the accused in jail for years before a trial even begins.

      I have a friend in the Philippines, who's father was arrested for drugs, using and selling. The father has been in jail for over 3 years, no trial, no bond, nothing. And then, suddenly, my friend was approached by the Barangay Colonel with a proposition.

      "pay me 15,000 php now, I will bring your fathers papers to the top so that he appears to the judge quick. Then I will make sure the arresting officer does not show in court. Your father will then be released because the officer did not show for court. As soon as your father is released, you pay me the remaining 60,000 php. (75,000 php total).

      This has come from a well respected Barangay Colonel with much power in the Barangay Community.

      As far as this officer in the video? I just wish he had been given a trial, desk job, something with a little more justice. As to the officers? I wish they had been better trained. And I wish no body would have died.

      This is a traffic incident on any level you look at.

      JJ :)