President Benigno S. Aquino III personally extends his condolences to the family of slain Marine Corporal Josen Mias and Sergeant Francis Jeffel Flores during the wake at the Fort Bonifacio Naval Station Mortuary in Taguig City on Monday afternoon (March 16). President Aquino recognized the heroism of the two marines killed in encounters with Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in Maguindanao. (MNS photo)

President Benigno S. Aquino III personally extends his condolences to the family of slain Marine Corporal Josen Mias and Sergeant Francis Jeffel Flores during the wake at the Fort Bonifacio Naval Station Mortuary in Taguig City on Monday afternoon (March 16). President Aquino recognized the heroism of the two marines killed in encounters with Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in Maguindanao. (MNS photo)

MANILA (Mabuhay) – Malacañang on Wednesday said that while President Benigno Aquino III has taken responsibility for the Mamasapano debacle it does not necessarily mean that he will apologize for it.

“We had discussions with him yesterday but none touching on the call for him to issue an apology over it,” Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte told Palace reporters when asked about calls for Aquino to give a public apology.

“So far, he has been focused on what can be done in the aftermath of the January 25 incident and he has been focused on these things,” she added when asked why Aquino has not considered apologizing despite saying he was also responsible for what happened.

Both former President Fidel Ramos and Senator Grace Poe said the President should consider saying sorry for his involvement in the botched operation, which resulted in the deaths of 44 policemen, 18 Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) fighters and five civilians.

“Why is it so difficult for him to say sorry about that?” Ramos told reporters on Wednesday. “Saying I’m sorry humbly and sincerely would do 90 percent of the job but hurt has gone deeper.” (MNS)