By Junex Doronio
November 9, 2022
DOJ Sec. Boying Remulla (Bombo Radyo photo courtesy)
MANILA — Despite the openness of the Philippine National Police (PNP) that there could be a more powerful mastermind than suspended Bureau of Correction (BuCor) chief Gerald Bantag behind the slaying of hard-hitting broadcaster Percival “Percy Lapid” Mabasa, Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin “Boying” Remulla had quickly junked insinuations of former President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s involvement.
On Wednesday, November 9, PNP spokesperson Police Colonel Jean Fajardo said although the current evidence showed that Bantag was the supposed “backstop” the national police will file a supplemental complaint if in the course of the probe and trial there will be pieces of evidence that may lead to other masterminds.
“Bukas pa rin naman ang PNP kung saka-sakaling during the conduct of the preliminary investigation and sa actual trial at maisampa na officially sa korte itong kaso na ito at may lalabas pong ebidensiya pa na magtuturo sa iba pang tao na may kinalaman sa dalawang kaso na ito ay maaari naman po tayong magsampa ng supplemental complaint,” Fajardo said during her interview with GMA News’ Unang Balita.
The assassinated journalist’s brother and former National Press Club (NPC) president Roy Mabasa said other suspects might still be identified as the Department of Justice (DOJ) said it was only “95 percent” complete in its murder investigation.
Mabasa said it was “possible that there may be another person behind (Bantag), knowing Bantag’s background and loyalty affiliation.”
But Remulla immediately dismissed Duterte’s possible involvement in the murder.
“That’s already political level. We’re not concerned about the politics, we’re concerned about the crimes,” the DOJ chief told reporters on Tuesday, November 8.