Ricky Carandang, who heads the Presidential Communications Group, said Aquino was not aware of the first call because he was in a meeting and because the call came in through the palace’s main phone line with no prior notice. Carandang said the caller was an aide of Tsang, and an aide of Aquino answered the phone. He said Aquino’s aide knew who Tsang was, but was unsure it was really from his office.
The palace contacted the Foreign Affairs Department to set up a phone call through Foreign Secretary Alberto Romulo, in what would be diplomatic protocol. Presidential spokesman Ed Lacierda said he phoned Romulo’s spokesman Ed Malaya to convey the request to arrange a conversation between Tsang and Aquino. No word came back, so Lacierda tried to phone Malaya again three times but could not reach him. The department declined to tell the Post why no one returned Tsang’s calls that night.Baloney!
In a crisis situation, the usual diplomatic protocols have to be weighed against the necessity of informing the Hongkong leader and the relatives of those held hostage of what the Philippine government was doing.
In fact, it wouldn't be completely WRONG for President Benigno Simeon Cojuanco Aquino III to have taken the initiative to call up Hongkong Chief Executive Donald Tsang or IMMEDIATELY SET UP OPEN LINES OF COMMUNICATION WITH THE Hongkong Representatives here as well as the RELATIVES OF THE HONGKONG NATIONALS WHO WERE BEING HELD HOSTAGE.