Go after Quiboloy,Makabayan asks House

Sheila Crisostomo - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — The Makabayan bloc yesterday asked the House of Representatives to “go after” Kingdom of Jesus Christ head pastor Apollo Quiboloy, saying his role in the Sonshine Media Network International (SMNI) must be thoroughly looked into.

“The House must go after Quiboloy who is widely known to be the owner of SMNI. He should not escape (liabilities) just because it was said he is not the owner (of SMNI). We have not dug deeper on his role in SMNI,” Gabriela Women’s partylist Rep. Arlene Brosas noted.

Brosas was apparently referring to a statement of SMNI legal counsel Mark Tolentino during a hearing of the House committee on legislative franchises that the media network “is not owned” by Quiboloy.

“He’s facing appalling crimes attributed to him and his organization, including conspiracy to engage in sex trafficking by force, fraud and coercion and then sex trafficking of children and bulk cash smuggling,” she added.

The lawmaker said the government must immediately extradite Quiboloy to the United States where he is facing these charges.

“He must face the heinous crimes that he committed. We all know that these were neglected during the Durterte administration because he was very close to president Duterte at that time,” she added.

ACT Teachers partylist Rep. France Castro said the panel’s investigation must continue because there are still many issues on SMNI and Quiboloy to “unfold.”

But Castro clarified that the Makabayan bloc does not support revocation of SMNI’s franchise as they support freedom of speech and of the press.

“What we want is to correct the programs and direction (of SMNI) so there will be no more red-tagging and defamation,” Castro said.

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