By the Philippine News Agency
The allegations made by Peter Joemel Advincula, a.k.a. Bikoy, as well as the timing of his press conference are part of a ploy to undermine the chances of President Duterte’s senatorial bets.
Surigao del Norte Rep. Robert Ace Barbers made these remarks after Advincula, a former marketing executive, surfaced Monday and asked for legal assistance from the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP).
“The fact that Advincula surfaced exactly a week before the elections was obviously a move to discredit or weigh down the administration’s rampaging candidates, which in this case, was (former Special Assistant to the President) Bong Go,” he said.
“It runs smack of political opportunism that someone the people hardly know would come out, make a huge spectacle, with just a week before the elections,” Barbers said.
The chair of the House committee on dangerous drugs also questioned Advincula’s motive in offering himself to a Senate investigation instead of choosing to go to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).
He pointed out that it was odd that Bikoy, despite allegedly having all the pieces of evidence and so-called first-hand experience, would declare his willingness to testify before a Senate hearing.
“Surely, his allegations could be validated if he chooses to go to the NBI. Was his motive in offering himself to a Senate investigation a way to give audience to the opposition candidates?” Barbers said.
He added that if Advincula’s allegations were really true, he could have brought his alleged evidence straight to the court than appear in social media.
He said if Bikoy is credible as he claims to be, he does not have to hide his identity and could even avail of the Department of Justice’s witness protection program.
“It just won’t add up. Something fishy is going on,” Barbers said, urging the public to be more critical of news materials that may contain false claims, especially now that the election is drawing near.
“Let us not base our votes on lies that various groups have long been brewing. They could discredit our President and derail his efforts to bolster the progress of our country. Let’s not lose ourselves in the drama that Bikoy tried to project in the press conference or in the video series,” Barbers said.