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The truth shall set you free

Jude Josue Sabio .

STARTING April 23, 2019 up to April 29, 2019 when former senator Trillanes tried to recruit me as lawyer for Bikoy, I was not told and did not ask about the identity of Bikoy’s supposed “handlers,” although I had then the reasonable impression that Trillanes was directly involved as shown by his active attempt to recruit me as lawyer.  Due to that earlier stupid question about my lawyer’s license, my lawyering for Bikoy became out of the question; it also did not come to the point that as a lawyer, I needed or demanded to talk to or personally meet Bikoy himself in order to further assess the legal matter. 

I came to know later, especially from the published statement of Bishop Ambo David, corroborated by Bikoy himself, that Fr. Albert Alejo, S.J. is a principal handler.  Had I known then about Fr. Alejo, I would have immediately declined just by text, because I would not have allowed myself to be again exposed to potential risk arising from my bad experience with Fr. Alejo in relation to Guillermina “Mina” Arcillas whom he had unceremoniously dumped at the last minute in the end of December 2016, resulting into her surprise complete turnaround in April 2017.  

This is not to mention my deep-seated grudge against Fr. Alejo when he did not have the elementary courtesy of telling me about Arturo Lascanas’ coming out in February 2017, as if he distrusted me and was keeping me out of the loop.  Also, in a personal meeting with him in April 2017, Fr. Alejo blurted to me “Kailangan ba talagang e file yan?” as if to discourage or prevent me,  at a time when it was only days before I was about to leave for the Hague to file that communication against President Duterte.

Based on the recent published statement of Archbishop Villegas, as corroborated by Bikoy himself, the Ateneo de Manila University appears to be in the middle of this cause celebre, given also that a Jesuit priest, Fr. Alejo, is directly identified to be principally involved.  It appears that the Communications Center of the Ateneo was instrumental as a venue for the production of those Totoong Narcolist Videos.

The Jesuits are dear to me, because without them I would not have earned my college degree at the Ateneo. Just from a humble beginning, I deeply owe a deep sense of personal gratitude to them, especially to Fr. William Kreutz, S. J., then the Scholarship and Aids Director, who personally saw to it that I would be given a full scholarship (full tuition and fees and free dormitory at Cervini Hall) that allowed me to finish my Bachelor of Arts in Political Science in 1986. 

At that time or way back in 1982, I personally talked to Fr. Kreutz telling him that my present course BS Physics was incompatible with my ambition to become a lawyer.  He saw to it that I would be given a full scholarship after I had left the NSTA scholarship and shifted my course to AB Political Science which I completed in the year 1986 at the height of the Edsa revolution.  Thanks to Fr. Kreutz, my new course allowed me to later take up and finish law at the UP College of Law in 1993.

“Veritas Liberabit Vos” is the famous motto of the Ateneo de Manila University, my alma mater.  Translated to English, this motto means “The truth shall set you free.”  As I said in my recent writings, it is indispensable that Sen. Trillanes and Fr. Alejo, who are emerging as the supposed handlers of Bikoy,  must prove the truth of those “Totoong Narcolist Videos.”

They owe the truth to my alma mater, the Ateneo de Manila University, which is a sentinel of truth; it pains me deeply that its communication center was used to produce what are purported to be true narco list videos. They owe the truth to the hapless, innocent high Catholic prelates who must have just happened to meet Bikoy somewhere along the way for a proposed sanctuary, like Bishop Ambo David to whom Fr. Alejo came by to present Bikoy at one time.   

On a personal level, former senator Trillanes owes the truth to me.  As a lawyer, I steadfastly stand by the truth, as shown by my earlier staunch support and representation of Edgar Matobato, and as shown more importantly by that historic communication that I personally submitted with the ICC in direct collaboration with the senator, even if it meant going against the popular political tide and risking my life, liberty and security. 

In fairness to me, since he actually recruited me as lawyer for Bikoy, I assume that the senator believed in the truth of the Totoong Narco List Videos and he is duty-bound to prove such truth. 

As a Jesuit who embraces the Ateneo motto, Fr. Alejo owes it also to me, for his presumed collaboration with Trillanes in the attempt to recruit me for Bikoy. He personally owes the truth to me, given that he has earlier believed in the truth of the testimony of Edgar Matobato for whom he was the one who first recruited me as lawyer, and as a result, his recruitment of me later resulted into my submission of the first ICC communication  against President Duterte, in which there is now an ongoing preliminary examination.

In the ultimate sense, former senator Trillanes, Fr. Alejo, and the LP-led opposition owe it to themselves to prove the truth of the Totoong Narco List Videos. That is the only way that they will be able to redeem themselves.   After all, how can they say that they are fighting for justice in the ICC in relation to the extrajudicial killings when they are involved in the Totoong Narco List Videos that they purport to be true, when in truth and in fact are not? 

In the end, only the truth will set them free.

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TREND MAKER. Mindanao Gold Star Daily was established in 1989 to set ablaze a new meaning & flame to the local newspaper business. Throughout the years it continued its focus and interest in the rural areas & pioneered the growth of countryside journalism.

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