By Junex Doronio
November 10, 2022
MANILA — Despite the announcement of Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin “Boying” Remulla that he believes there is no bigger mastermind behind the Percy Lapid killing, the family of the slain hard-hitting broadcaster on Thursday expressed elation when President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr . ordered the probe to continue.
“Hangga’t may natitira pong porsyento sa ginagawa ng NBI (National Bureau of Investigation) at PNP (Philippine National Police) ay hindi po kami titigil. In fact, natuwa nga po kami, kaninang umaga… mismong si Pangulong Marcos ang nagsabi na hindi pa ititigil ang imbestigasyon,” Percy’s brother former National Press Club (NPC) president Roy Mabasa said.
Mabasa said this when asked in the Super Radyo dzBB interview if their family believes that suspended Bureau of Corrections chief Gerald Bantag is the final mastermind behind the killing.
“Ito’y pagpapakita ng, alam mo, pag-asa sa lahat na mahahalungkat pa kung ano ang dapat mahalungkat,” he pointed out.
Percy Lapid’s real name was Percival Mabasa. He was shot dead last October 3.
Remulla has immediately dismissed insinuations that former president Rodrigo Roa Duterte — who was among the personalities heavily criticized by Percy Lapid — could be linked 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.
Authorities had pointed to Bantag and BuCor official Ricardo Zulueta as the ones behind the killing of Lapid and alleged middleman Jun Villamor. Two murder complaints have been filed against them.
Joel Escorial, who surrendered and confessed to authorities that he was the gunman after the announcement of the P6.5 million bounty, earlier claimed that a certain “Bantag” had ordered the killing of Lapid.
Last week, Bantag had strongly denied having a hand in the Percy Lapid killing and vowed that he said that he would rather die than go to jail.
“’Pag nandoon na ako, hindi mo na ako makikita sigurado doon. Tatadtarin ako nang pino doon.Ipapahintulot ko bang makulong ako? Patayin na lang ninyo ako, kasi alam ko mangyayari sa akin. Magpapatayan na lang kami ng gobyernong ito,” Bantag said in Anthony Taverna’s vlog.
Friends and relatives of Bantag reportedly held a gathering in Baguio City to call for a “clean and fair investigation” into the killing of Lapid.