NBI to summon man claiming to be ‘Bikoy’

Robie de Guzman   •   May 7, 2019   •   3677

Peter Joemel Advincula at a press briefing claiming to be the hooded figure,”Bikoy” in the video series that linked President Rodrigo Duterte’s family to illegal drug trade.

MANILA, Philippines – The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) is set to summon a man claiming to be ‘Bikoy’ in the video series entitled “Ang Totoong Narcolist” which linked some members and other personalities close to the Duterte family to the narcotics trade.

NBI cybercrime division chief Vic Lorenzo said on Tuesday they are planning to send a subpoena to the man, who identified himself as Peter Joemel Advincula, after he surfaced on Monday at the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP).

READ: Man claiming to be Bikoy asks help from IBP

“Kung malinaw na kung nasaan siya ngayon para maisyuhan namin siya ng subpoena. Padalhan namin siya ng subpoena para malaman natin ‘yung side niya,” Lorenzo said.

Advincula said at the IBP press conference Monday that he went out of hiding to ask legal aid from the IBP to file charges against presidential son Paolo Duterte, former Special Assistant to the President and Senatorial candidate Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go, and Lawyer Manases Carpio, the husband of Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio.

He also said that he wanted to seek assistance following threats against his life.

In a video series uploaded online, Bikoy, the hooded figure in the clips, claimed that he was a former member of a drug syndicate operating in Luzon. He also accused Paolo Duterte of funneling drug money in bank accounts supposedly owned by Carpio’s brother, Agriculture Assistant Secretary Waldo Carpio.

‘Bikoy’ claimed in the video that both Duterte and Go have tattoos on their backs of dragon-like figures and alphanumeric codes of their supposed bank accounts for their dealings with drug syndicates.

On Monday, Advincula also claimed that Go and Duterte have back tattoos, having scanned them personally.

Both Duterte and Go have repeatedly denied the allegations.

Lorenzo said they will summon Advincula for questioning and to shed light on some issues, particularly on his identity and the drug claims he made against the Duterte family members.

“Ang intensyon namin is of course, makausap siya. ‘Yun muna ang dapat naming gawin. Tingnan natin kung ano mga revelations niya. Madami din kaming tanong sa kanya,” he said.

Lorenzo also said that they are now investigating several persons of interest in the ‘Bikoy’ narco videos based on the forensic examination they conducted on the electronic gadgets obtained from Rodel Jayme.

He, however, refused to divulge the identities of these persons as investigation and evidence gathering are ongoing.

READ: Jayme possible as state witness but no assurance yet—NBI

The 27-year-old Jayme previously said he is prepared to help the government in apprehending the individual who asked him to make the website as well as the personalities behind the video.

But the NBI earlier said that although it is possible, there is no assurance if Jayme is qualified to become a state witness.

According to Republic Act 6981 or the Witness Protection, Security and Benefit Act, the qualifications to become a state witness are:

(a) the offense in which his testimony will be used is a grave felony as defined under the Revised Penal Code or its equivalent under special laws;(b) there is an absolute necessity for his testimony;
(c) there is no other direct evidence available for the proper prosecution of the offense committed:
(d) his testimony can be substantially corroborated on its material points;
(e) he does not appear to be most guilty; and
(f) he has not at any time been convicted of any crime involving moral turpitude.

(with details from April Cenedoza)

Duterte meets with Filipino SEA Games ‘hero’ surfer, surfing team in Palace

Robie de Guzman   •   December 11, 2019

President Rodrigo (left); hero surfer Roger Casugay (center) with the rest of the Philippine surfing team at Malacañan Palace

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday met with the members of the Philippine surfing team, including Southeast Asian (SEA) Games gold medalist Roger Casugay, who recently went viral for his heroic act of saving his Indonesian rival during their event.

Casugay and the rest of the team paid a courtesy call to Duterte in Malacañang, based on photos released to media on Wednesday morning.

Casugay earned praises after he rescued Indonesian surfer Arip Nurhidayat who was swept by rolling waves after he broke his leash in the middle of men’s longboard open surfing competition in La Union. 

The 25-year old surfer eventually won the gold medal after the event between the two was rescheduled on Sunday.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo on Monday expressed his appreciation for Casugay for personifying sportsmanship in the ongoing biennial meet.

The Senate also adopted a resolution commending the athlete for displaying an act of heroism and courage.

Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go said Casugay will be conferred the Order of Lapu-Lapu by the President in a Palace ceremony next week.

The Order of Lapu-Lapu is bestowed upon individuals who are recognized for their invaluable service in relation to a campaign or advocacy of the President.

Casugay was earlier chosen to be the country’s flag bearer in the SEA Games closing ceremonies to be held on Wednesday at the New Clark City in Tarlac.

Duterte fetes Philippine Army shooters

Robie de Guzman   •   December 10, 2019

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte announces to the Philippine Army Team that they will receive P500,000 incentive for their sterling performance in the ASEAN Armies Rifle Meet 2019 held recently in Indonesia. KARL NORMAN ALONZO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte gave recognition to Philippine Army shooters who hauled medals from the recently-concluded ASEAN Armies Rifles Meet (AARM) held in Indonesia.

The recognition was conducted in Malacañang on Monday during a courtesy call to the President, the Philippine Army said in a statement Tuesday.

According to Philippine Army Commanding General Lt. Gen. Gilbert Gapay, members of the shooting team called “Manunudla” were introduced to the president while they presented their medals and trophies from the AARM 2019.

“Manunudla” is a Filipino word that means shooter. It was chosen to symbolize the team as a way of embracing its Filipino identity while representing the country in various international events.

The shooting team were able to bring home a total of 22 medals – 7 gold, 8 silver and 7 bronze – putting them at the second place. The 6 gold, 7 silver, and 7 bronze were from the team events, and 1 gold, 1 silver from the individual events.

The competitions during the AARM include the pistol (men & women), rifle/carbine and machine gun matches.

“I give my full support to the training of the Philippine Army soldiers so they can perform their duties at the best of their abilities. For the shooters, aim to be on the top of AARM next year,” Duterte said as he lauded the shooters for their efforts during the event.

“With the support of the President, our soldiers will train hard to excel not only in the field of competition but in everything they do as we transform into a world-class Army,” Gapay said.

PH, Japan meet tackle closer cooperation on key infrastructure projects

Robie de Guzman   •   December 10, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines and Japan both agreed to strengthen the strategic partnership between the two countries in implementing key infrastructure projects under the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte.

In a statement, the Department of Finance (DOF) said that during the high-level meeting held in Hakone last Dec. 6, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez and Japan’s Hiroto Izumi, special advisor to Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, discussed Japan’s continued assistance for the Philippines’ infrastructure projects.

The two sides also expressed readiness to sign the JPY4.409 billion supplemental loan agreement for the Metro Manila Priority Seismic Bridge Improvement Project in the coming months.

During the meeting, the two officials signed the memorandum of cooperation (MOC) signifying the latter’s commitment to provide technical support to the Duterte administration’s formulation of a regional development master plan designed to maximize the economic potentials of the Subic Bay and its surrounding areas.

In November, the DOF said that Japan have committed to support the masterplan which includes the development of possible projects that will help boost economy in the Subic Bay area.

Japan also committed to extend additional technical assistance that are critical to the Philippines’ campaign to bridge the infrastructure financing gap.

Both sides likewise confirmed to work towards the signing of the exchange of notes and the loan agreement for a supplemental loan to finance the ongoing Davao City Bypass Construction Project (DCBCP).

The two countries also committed to speed up the formulation of the Central Mindanao Highway Project (Cagayan de Oro-Malaybalay Section), as a candidate for Japanese official development assistance (ODA).

In addition, the DOF said that Japanese officials have expressed their intention to conduct pre-feasibility studies for four of the Philippines’ priority projects: the Cebu Circumferential Road, Second San Juanico Bridge and Access Road, Central Mindanao Highway (Cagayan de Oro-Malaybay Section), and Agusan del Norte-Butuan City Logistical Highway (4th Butuan Bridge.)

Japan also reiterated its intention to provide a loan for the Cebu-Mactan Bridge and Coastal Road Construction Project, as well as additional technical assistance to the Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) and the rehabilitation and reconstruction of the Most Affected Areas (MAA) in Marawi City.

The two sides also discussed other loan financing arrangements for the Philippines as it transitions to Upper Middle-Income Country (UMIC) status ahead of schedule in 2020.

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