Benaldo: It was accident, not suicide
Janvic Mateo (The Philippine Star) - July 16, 2013 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Former Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Benjamin Benaldo claimed yesterday that the incident at his office at the House of Representatives in Quezon City last June 27 that left him with a gunshot wound in his chest was a “pure accident.”

Benaldo, however, did not elaborate.

“Let me state for the record that what happened in my office in the House of Representatives in the evening of June 27, 2013 which very nearly took my life was a pure accident,” Benaldo said in a prepared statement he read at the lobby of St. Luke’s Medical Center in Quezon City.

“I thank my staff for their quick action and my doctors for doing everything to save my life,” said Benaldo, husband of Brazilian model Daiana Menezes.

Benaldo was discharged yesterday from the hospital, where he has been confined since he was transferred from the New Era General Hospital where he was rushed after the shooting incident at the House.

The former congressman’s staff heard a gunshot emanating from the office of the congressman who was alone in the room.

Benaldo sustained a gunshot wound at the left side of his chest, with the bullet injuring “the upper lobe of the left lung and several blood vessels.”

The St. Luke’s Medical Center, in an earlier medical bulletin, said the upper lobe of his left lung of Benaldo was removed in a medical procedure.

Benaldo was rushed to the New Era General Hospital after his staff discovered him bloodied inside his office at the South Wing of Batasan complex.

He refused to provide more details on how the incident happened, saying he will do so once he feels better.

The congressman was brought out of the hospital on a wheelchair, but he was able to get up and read his statement standing behind a podium.

Clad in a blue long-sleeved button-down shirt, the former congressman said it was the first time he wore a shirt since the incident.

He left the hospital after reading his prepared statement.

Not about Daiana

In his statement, Benaldo insisted that his wife Daiana had nothing to do with what happened.

“I understand there had been speculations in some sectors that the cause of the near fatal incident in my office was the much-publicized misunderstanding between me and my celebrity wife,” he said.

“Let me say that Daiana had nothing to do with the accident. She was not in my office at that time,” he added.

Benaldo said Menezes was at his side throughout his stay at the hospital. However, the model – whom Benaldo said was in the area – was not with him when he left the hospital.

Benaldo and Menezes recently hit the headlines after the model posted on her social media accounts cryptic messages about physical and sexual abuse.

The couple later appeared in a television interview and admitted “having problems.” The two said they are trying to resolve their issues.


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