Press Release
October 6, 2016


Senator Richard J. Gordon assured that the Senate Committee on Justice and Human Rights would still continue investigating, in aid of legislation, the recent and rampant killings in the country.

Gordon clarified that developments in last Monday's hearing, which further exposed Edgar Matobato's lack of credibility as a witness, prompted the committee merely to suspend the ongoing proceedings, not to terminate it.

"After what happened last Monday, we had to suspend the hearing. There were some proposals to terminate it but it was decided to pursue the investigation on the recent and rampant killings. Hindi ko bibitawan yon. Sinasabi ko, killing is killing. Consistent yan. Sinasabi ko, do not kill the people, kill drugs. Ang sinasabi ko, gusto kong tulayan 'yan para ma-solve 'yan," he said.

The senator, who chairs the committee, said the next hearing is scheduled for October 13, 2016. Police officers, such as district and provincial directors, and officials of the Commission on Human Rights will be invited as resource persons and witnesses.

He added the probe will continue without Matobato, which he said was "damaged goods."

"Hindi naman kasi si Matobato ang be-all and end-all ng hearing. Ang target ko is to come up with legislation or amendments to existing laws to ensure the safety and protection of citizens. Kaya nga we will invite the district directors and the provincial directors, especially in areas or provinces where there are high incidents of killings because matagal na 'yan. Come on people, alam naman natin di ba - riding in tandem, ang dami-dami ng napatay," Gordon said.

"Ang gusto ko magkaroon ng scorecard - o, provincial director heto ang number ng mga napatay sa Cebu, ginagawa mo ba ang trabaho mo? Ganun din sa ibang probinsiya. My aim is for the Senate to be regularly furnished with a list para magkaroon ng Congressional crime monitoring group so we can take action. Dun dapat tayo pupunta para matigil, para mahinahon ang tao. Kung di yun ang pakay natin, bakit tayo nagi-imbestiga?" he added.

Gordon suspended the October 3 hearing after 13-hours after it was discovered that Matobato left shortly before he was summoned to the Session Hall to confront the Davao police officers that he previously tagged in his testimony in earlier hearings. They all denied the allegations made by Matobato, who, after the previous hearing presided by Gordon as chair, was ordered last September 22 to make himself available during the forthcoming hearings in case he would be needed to make some clarifications on his testimonies.

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