DOJ takes cautious approach on issuing lookout bulletin for Quiboloy


With no preliminary investigation on Apollo Quiboloy, the Department of Justice (DOJ) on Wednesday said it will “err on the side of caution” before issuing an immigration lookout bulletin order (ILBO) for the Kingdom of Jesus Christ (KOJC) leader.

In an ambush interview, Justice spokesperson Mico Clavano said that a preliminary investigation is one of the requirements in the filing of an ILBO.

“Otherwise, it might set a dangerous precedent na kung wala pang investigation, wala pang kaso sa korte, mag lalabas na po tayo ng ILBO,” Clavano explained.

(Issuing an ILBO while there’s no investigation, no case in court, might set a dangerous precedent.)

“So what the department is trying to do is to err on the cautious side of things na hindi naman tayo, we won’t jump the gun, no. Hindi naman tayo nagmamadali na kung magkaroon ng investigation, that will probably be the best time,” he added.

(So what the department is trying to do is to err on the cautious side of things so that we won’t jump the gun. We’re not in a hurry and if there will be an investigation, that will probably be the best time.)

Clavano said that there were instances where ILBOs were issued as a result of an investigation by the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee or a Senate inquiry.

“We’ll have to see the request of Senator Risa (Hontiveros) before making any further statements,” he said.

This came after Hontiveros, Senate Deputy Minority Leader, on Tuesday urged the DOJ to issue an ILBO against Quiboloy amid new allegations of exploitation and sexual abuse against the preacher.

“Ang sa amin lang po ayaw lang talaga namin na magkaroon ng precedent na ganoon. Because that is already infringing sa aming tanaw, medyo infringement na po ‘yan sa isang— ‘yung mga karapatan ng tao natin. And it might be subject to abuse kasi na wala pang investigation, meron nang ILBO,” Clavano said.

(For us [at DOJ], we do not want to create a precedent. Because that is already infringing, in our point of view, it’s already somewhat of an infringement of our citizen’s human rights. And it might be subject to abuse since while there’s no investigation, there’s already an ILBO.)

“Even if it’s just a monitoring mechanism, ayaw lang talaga namin na may hindrance or may siguro dent doon sa mga karapatan ng ating mga kababayan,” he added.


(Even if it’s just a monitoring mechanism, we just don’t want a hindrance or a dent in the rights of our countrymen.)

Clavano explained that an ILBO does not prevent a person from leaving the country. He said it is only a “monitoring mechanism” where the government is alerted whenever individuals on the list will enter or leave the country.

The Justice spokesperson said a hold departure order (HDO) or a provisional hold departure order (PHDO) prevents an individual from leaving the country.

An HDO or PHDO may only be issued by courts pending a case or preliminary probe.
Meanwhile, Atty. Ferdinand Topacio, the legal counsel of Quiboloy, reiterated his dare for Hontiveros to bring the allegations against his client before the proper courts.

“Kung totoo man ang sinasabi nitong mga witnesses na ito, ito ang hamon ko kay Senator Hontiveros, ha. Edi tulungan ng tanggapan niya na mag file ng kaso sa korte. Bakit sa Senado?” Topacio said in a separate ambush interview.

(If what the witnesses are telling is true, I dare Senator Hontiveros. Her office should help the witnesses file a case in court. Why bring this to the Senate?)

When asked if he has talked to Quiboloy on the recent allegations and their plans, Topacio said he is invoking lawyer-client privilege.

Topacio said he believes that the proposed investigation against Quiboloy, the calls to suspend Sonshine Media Network International (SMNI) — which the preacher reportedly owns — as well as the citing in contempt of SMNI hosts Lorraine Badoy and Jeffrey “Ka Eric” Celiz shows a “pattern of harassment and persecution.”—RF, GMA Integrated News