Senate panel cites Quiboloy in contempt

Pastor Apollo Quiboloy
Pastor Apollo QuiboloyPhoto from Pastor Apollo Quiboloy Facebook page

THE Senate Committee on Women, Children, Family Relations and Gender Equality is seeking the arrest of Kingdom of Jesus Christ (KJC) leader Pastor Apollo Quiboloy, who continuously refuses to heed to the call of the panel for him to attend its ongoing probe into alleged crimes committed within the organization.

During the resumption of the probe on Tuesday, March 5, 2024, committee chairperson Risa Hontiveros cited Quiboloy in contempt “for his refusal to be sworn or to testify before this investigation.”

“This committee requests the Senate President to order his arrest so that he may be brought to testify,” said Hontiveros.

In a letter addressed to Hontiveros and Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri, Quiboloy’s lawyer Melanio Balayan said the “issuance and enforcement of the said subpoena is in wanton violation of the fundamental and sacred constitutional rights of our client against self-incrimination and the presumption of innocence until proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt.”

“With the criminal charges against him being tried virtually in public through the [S]enate committee and all available media, our client is now being humiliated, ridiculed, harassed and maligned at all media fronts with reckless abandon as if he was already a convict. The essence of due process of law -- that hears before it condemns -- is being rendered useless under the present circumstances. We thus invoke our client's right against further incrimination by recusing himself from the ongoing investigation," read the letter.

Hontiveros refused, however, to accept such an excuse.

Senator Robin Padilla objected to the issuance of an arrest order against Quiboloy.

Hontiveros said the members of the panel have seven days to formalize any objection to her ruling citing Quiboloy in contempt.

Facing the Senate panel, several former members of KJC shared their bad experiences at the hands of Quiboloy and other high-ranking officials of the organization.

Some women claimed they were sexually abused by the self-proclaimed “Appointed Son of God,” while some men said they received painful physical punishment for violating rules.

Others also claimed that they were being instructed to beg on the streets as they have a “monthly quota” to reach.

During Tuesday’s hearing, Dindo Makiling, former executive director of KJC’s Children’s Joy Foundation in Canada and Australia, said he resigned from the post and ended his ties with the KJC after he realized that the funds being donated for the foundation are not being fully utilized for the needs of the children under its care.

He said the minors under the care of the foundation are mostly children of KJC’s full-time workers who were being sent abroad.

“Kaya ako tralaga nagkaroon na ng question, all the money that we collect here, lalabas ang pera ng hindi ko alam…Most of the funds makikita ko naman sa report nila pumupunta sa kung saan hindi naman napupunta sa mga bata,” said Makiling.

(That's why I already had a question, because all the money that we collect here is released without my knowledge... Most of the funds, I can see in their report, don't go to the children.)

“Na-release na ang pera bago pa ako iinform kasi who am I daw, mataas pa daw ba ko kay Apollo Quiboloy na nag-utos sa kanila na magpadala ng pera. 2019 nagresign na ako kasi merong 1 million Canadian dollars na pinadala kami sa Pilipinas na walang explanation… Niloloko mo ang mga tao na nangongolekta ka para sa mga bata ‘yun pala pang gasoline lang sa jet kasi babyahe mula Davao papunta sa Maynila, wala daw pang fuel,” he added.

(The money was already released before I was informed, saying Apollo Quiboloy ordered them to send money. In 2019, I resigned because we sent 1 million Canadian dollars to the Philippines with no explanation... You are deceiving the people that you are collecting for the children, but the money was spent just for gasoline for the jet that Quiboloy will be using for his flight from Davao to Manila.)

Makiling said he was then accused of stealing money from the foundation but he maintained that there were no cases filed against him.

Quibiloy earlier said that he will only face charges against him in a proper court.

On Monday, March 4, Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin Remulla said the DOJ has ordered the filing of child abuse and human trafficking charges against Quiboloy in Davao City and Pasig City, respectively. (TPM/SunStar Philippines)


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