NBI to summon man claiming to be ‘Bikoy’

Robie de Guzman   •   May 7, 2019   •   3868

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 on reopening the economy: ‘We cannot afford to gamble’

Marje Pelayo   •   July 9, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The country is not yet ready to fully reopen its economy, according to President Rodrigo Duterte.

The Chief Executive said the government is doing the process gradually, otherwise the number of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) infections would spike that could lead to a bigger problem.

He said he cannot follow the example of other countries because the Philippines does not have as much resources if the situation gets worse.

“Tayong pobre we cannot afford really a total epidemic or pandemonium. Mahirap tayo. Hindi tayo puwedeng sumugal (As a poor country, we cannot afford really a total epidemic or pandemonium. We are poor. We cannot afford to gamble),” the President said during his public address on Tuesday evening (July 7).

President Duterte cited situations in the United States and Brazil where despite being powerful and wealthy, are not spared from the impact of the pandemic.

“Although they opened their economy for money to come into the government coffers, there was a spike. They were having a problem of almost a relapse — in the totality of the number,” he added.

Meanwhile, the President expressed doubts that the country has entered the second wave of COVID-19 outbreak.

“Now we do not even know if the number of 34, 178 of active cases is still a part of the first wave or have we arrived at the second wave. I don’t think so. We are still grappling with the first wave,” he argued.

He urged Filipinos to obey strict health protocols and have more patience as the government works to combat the pandemic.

Mga kababayan ko, ako mismo gusto ko nang lumabas. Ayoko nang magpapigil. Kung gusto ko nga makipag-away na ako. Ang problema iyon ang gusto ko, pero ang gusto ko ay hindi makakabuti sa ating lahat,” he said.

(My fellow countrymen, I personally I want to go out. I don’t want to be barred from doing so. I am even ready to fight over this. The problem is, what I want is not good for everyone.)

“We have to be very circumspect in reopening the economy. Dahan-dahan lang (Let’s do it gradually), because if you open the entire Philippines and thousands upon thousands of new cases would happen, then we are in deep s***. Talagang mahirapan tayo (We will seriously struggle),” he said. MNP (with inputs from Rosalie Coz)

Economic, infra clusters to hold pre-2020 SONA forum this week

Robie de Guzman   •   July 6, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Duterte government’s economic development and infrastructure Cabinet clusters are set to present the administration’s plans for recovery and resilience in the face of the coronavirus-induced headwinds this year at the first pre-State of the Nation Address (SONA) forum to be held this week.

The Department of Finance (DOF) said that the forum titled, “Regaining Momentum, Accelerating Recovery in a Post COVID-19 World,” will be held virtually on July 8.

Hosted by the Presidential Communications Operations Office and Office of the Cabinet Secretary, the forum will be streamed live on the Facebook pages of the Radio Television Malacañang, and other government agencies.

Finance Assistant Secretary Antonio Lambino II said this year’s pre-SONA forum will be different as the audience will be “purely virtual,” due to limitations on mass gathering amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“We do hope that our citizens will be able to tune in as the country’s top decision makers discuss our path to a quick and strong recovery from this crisis,” he said.

In the forum, the DOF said that top economic and infrastructure officials are also expected to report on the state of the Philippine economy, as well as the government’s ongoing efforts to leverage on its strong fundamentals in the fight against the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III and Public Works and Highways Secretary Mark Villar will present performance updates and priority plans, respectively, on the economic and infrastructure fronts.

Acting Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Kendrick Chua will speak on the Philippine Economic Recovery Program.

“The audience can expect Secretary Dominguez to delve deeper into the challenges we’re facing right now, the accomplishments in the previous year that we can build on, and the legislative proposals that the economic team submitted for Congress to consider,” Lambino said.

Meanwhile, updates on the monetary, external, and financial sectors will be discussed by Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Benjamin Diokno.

Pre-SONA forums are held annually to discuss in greater detail the achievements of the government in the previous year and the priorities of the Cabinet cluster heads in the run-up to the President’s SONA on July 27.

Several senators laud signing of Anti-Terror Act despite oppositions

Robie de Guzman   •   July 3, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Several senators have lauded President Rodrigo Duterte for signing the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 despite oppositions coming from different sectors.

“Much credit goes to PRRD (President Rodrigo Roa Duterte). With all the pressure coming from different directions against the signing of the Anti-Terrorism Bill into law, at the end of the day, it is his strong political will that mattered the most,” Senator Panfilo Lacson said in a statement Friday.

“I cannot imagine this measure being signed under another administration. If only for this, I take my hat off to the president,” he added.

Lacson, one of the principal authors and sponsor of the measure in the Senate, vowed that he would “exert extra effort in guarding against possible abuse in its implementation, notwithstanding all the safeguards incorporated in this landmark legislation.”

Senate President Vicente Sotto III also expressed elation over the enactment of the controversial bill.

“I am glad that the president has sifted through the rubble and saw the importance of the law!” he said in a message to reporters.

Senator Francis Tolentino also called the signing of the law as “very timely” and “historic” as the nation needed the measure.

“It just goes to show that a stable peace and order climate should go hand [in hand] with economic rejuvenation post COVID-19,” he added.

The new law repeals the Human Security Act of 2007 and penalizes those who will propose, incite, conspire, participate in the planning, training, preparation and facilitation of a terrorist act; as well as those who will provide material support to terrorists, and recruit members in a terrorist organization.

The measure allows suspected terrorists to be detained for up to 24 days without warrant. It also authorizes the Anti-Money Laundering Council to freeze the assets and accounts of individuals or groups tagged as terrorists.

Before it was enacted, the bill was met with widespread opposition from different groups who raised concern over its provisions that could be abused by authorities, stifle dissent and spur human rights violations.

But Sotto said the law has enough safeguards to prevent enforcers from abusing their authority.

“It’s full of safeguards but strong against terrorists. Unlike the old law, it was subject to abuse by the terrorists,” Sotto said.

Lacson has repeatedly defended the measure, saying it has enough protection to ensure the rights of those detained.

REACH US

The Philippine Broadcast Hub

UNTV, 915 Barangay Philam,

EDSA, Quezon City M.M. 1104

(+632) 8396-8688 (Tel)

info@untv-newsandrescue.com (General inquiries)

ABOUT UNTV

UNTV is a major TV broadcast network with 24-hour programming. An Ultra High Frequency station with strong brand content that appeal to everyone, UNTV is one of the most trusted and successful Philippine networks that guarantees wholesome and quality viewing experience.