EMBATTLED Negros Oriental Third District Representative Arnolfo Teves Jr. asked for fairness amid the ongoing investigation on the assassination of Negros Oriental Governor Roel Degamo to which he is being tagged as the mastermind.

In a video message posted on his Facebook page, Teves said that he, along with the Degamos, is also a victim of the governor’s killing.

He reiterated that he had nothing to do with the attack that led to the death of Degamo and eight other innocent civilians.

“Hindi ba dapat sa lahat ng imbestigasyon, una ang ebidensya bago ang suspect or ang mastermind? Anong nangyayari dito sa Negros Oriental? Naglagay na agad sila ng suspect, naglagay ng mastermind sabay pinahabol ang ebidensya na tumama sa gusto nilang maging mastermind at suspect. Hindi ba mali? Hindi dapat ganoon,” said Teves.

(Shouldn't the evidence come first before the suspect or the mastermind in all investigations? What is happening here in Negros Oriental? They immediately put a suspect, put a mastermind, at the same time chasing the evidence that matches with the one they want to be the mastermind and suspect. Isn't that wrong? It shouldn't be like that.)

“Hinihingi ko lang naman fairness at hindi ‘yung ididiin ‘yung isang tao. Hiningi ko rin sana na tignan lahat ng anggulo... Nananawagan ako sa ating mahal na Presidente, sobra na ‘yung ginagawa ng ibang tao sa gobyerno sa akin, masyado na nila akong dinidiin, kinakawawa at inaapi,” he added.

(I'm just asking for fairness and not to put pressure on one person. I would have also asked to look at all angles... I am calling on our dear President, what other people in the government are doing to me is too much, they are pressuring and oppressing me too much.)

Teves said some individuals in the government were using him for their personal gains, mentioning political mileage and electronic cockfight operations.

The congressman also made the video amid the appeal for him to come back to the country and face allegations in the country.

The House Committee on Ethics and Privileges earlier gave Teves until Tuesday afternoon, March 21, to personally appear before the panel and explain his absence amid his expired travel authority.

The committee has reached a decision on Teves case and it is set to be discussed during the plenary session at the house Wednesday, March 22.

Teves defended his defiance by reiterating the serious threat against his life amid accusations linking him not only on Degamo’s case but to three other murder incidents in Negros Oriental in 2019.

“Hindi ko maintindihan bakit pinipilit nila ako magpunta ng face-to-face na nakiusap na ako na hindi muna magpapakita muna doon ng physical dahil sa seryososng pagbabanta at grabeng pagbabanta sa aking buhay. Sa totoo lang, gusto ko nang umuwi, kung hindi sa banta sa aking buhay, uuwi na ako, pero hindi ko naman pwede ipagpalit ‘yung pagkakamiss ko sa ating bayan sa buhay ko,” he said.

(I don't understand why they are forcing me to go face-to-face when I begged not to show up there physically first because of serious threats to my life. Honestly, I want to go home, if it wasn't for the threat to my life, I would go home, but I can't trade my missing our town for my life.)

“Hindi naman sa wala akong tiwala sa inyo, paano n’yo ako magagarantiya ng safety ko? Unang-una, tinanggalan ako ng gobyerno ng baril, bodyguard, ngayon gagarantiyahan n’yo ako ng safety? Palagay natin lagyan n’yo ako ng pulis o army, ilang army, ilang pulis ang naka-assign kay Degamo, saan na siya ngayon? Nakalibing. Hindi nga sya nasecure ng sandamakmak na army, sabay sasabihian n’yo ako na kaya n’yo ako isecure?” he added.

(It's not that I don't trust you, but how can you guarantee my safety? First of all, the government took away my gun, bodyguard, now can you guarantee my safety? Let's assume you put the police or the army on me, how many army, how many police are assigned to Degamo, where is he now? Buried. He was not even secured by a large army, and now you will tell me that you can secure me?) (SunStar Philippines)