Senator Antonio Trillanes IV on Friday said his decision to turn over confessed hitman Edgar Matobato to the Philippine National Police (PNP) was merely “temporary.”
He reiterated that Matobato will still be under his protection after the self-confessed hitman has posted bail in connection with the illegal possession of firearms case against him.
“Temporary lang ito. Remember bailable 'yung kaso niya. Dadaanan lang ‘yung kailangan na daanan, 'yung pag-post ng bail, pag-arraign sa kanya, then kukuhanin ko ulit siya, 'yung custody niya,” Trillanes said.
Matobato has been under the protection of Trillanes since he first appeared before the Senate justice committee conducting the investigation on drug-related killings.
“Hindi natin siya pababayaan,” the senator said.
Trillanes is set to turn over Matobato to the PNP headquarters in Camp Crame at 10 a.m. Friday after a warrant of arrest was issued by a Davao court.
Sen. Trillanes has left the Senate to turn over confessed hitman Edgar Matobato to the PNP headquarters in Camp Crame pic.twitter.com/CcF8EueOUK— Kaecee Alvarez (@kaeceealvarez) October 7, 2016
“Bahala 'yung PNP kung saan nila i-accommodate pero kumbaga, i-tu-turn over natin siya ng buo at maayos and we expect him na ganoon pa din,” Trillanes said, hoping that matters concerning the legal process Matobato needs to go under will be “resolved” by Monday.
The arrest warrant was issued after Matobato failed to show up at his scheduled arraignment on Tuesday over the case filed against him in 2014.
In an urgent motion for reconsideration filed before the Municipal Trial Court in Cities of Davao City, Branch 3, Matobato argued that he was supposed to appear in the ongoing Senate inquiry on alleged extrajudicial killings.
The Senate justice committee was supposed to hold another hearing on Tuesday but it was suspended indefinitely by panel chairperson Senator Richard Gordon.
Matobato meanwhile said he does not fear for his safety despite implicating several police officers in alleged killings in Davao City supposedly on President Rodrigo Duterte’s orders during the latter’s term as mayor.
“Hindi ako natatakot dahil hindi lahat ng pulis masasamang tao,” Matobato said.
“Ako, handa na ako. ‘Yung buhay ko , binigay ko na sa Diyos. At kung ano mangyari sa 'kin, wala na 'kong magagawa, basta itama ko lang 'yung pagkakamali ko,” he added. —KG, GMA News