Teves slams ‘zarzuela’ to persecute him
Suspended Negros Oriental Rep. Arnolfo Teves Jr. on Saturday slammed what he described as a “zarzuela,” or stage drama, designed to persecute him for the killings of Negros Oriental Gov. Roel Degamo and eight supporters.
Appearing in a news forum via Zoom, Teves insisted that he had nothing to do with the March 4 killing of Degamo and his supporters at his residence in Pamplona, Negros Oriental.
“That is too much. They are making up so many zarzuelas and movies out of this … There are so many unbelievable things they are saying. They should be in the business of movies, not in real life,” he said.
Teves, who did not mention his current location, decried the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) moves against him as illegal and insisted on his earlier claim that two ranking government officials are plotting to have him killed the moment he returns to the Philippines.
Teves was on a medical leave in the United States on the day of the killing and has not returned since because of the supposed plot to kill him.
“They are doing everything to force me to come home and die. I know they want to kill me. I am rarely wrong in those things,” Teves said, referring to the DOJ’s announced move to have the representative designated a terrorist.
“This is really persecution already. This is too much and this is no longer right. They are curtailing my human rights,” he said.
Teves was also asked to comment on a supposed report claiming that his family, particularly his brother ex-Negros Oriental Gov. Pryde Henry Teves, had links to local terrorist groups.
According to the report, the improvised explosive devices that were found in a sugar mill owned Pryde Henry had the “signature” of bombers of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters and Abu Sayyaf.
The Inquirer tried but failed to verify the provenance or contents of the report.
Also on Saturday, Sen. Ronald dela Rosa on Saturday urged Teves to return to the country and air his side before the Senate.“As the Senate as an institution has firmly denied his appearance virtually, in the spirit that we need to acquire jurisdiction and in the spirit of fairness, he should come out of hiding,” said Dela Rosa, chair of the Senate committee on public order and dangerous drugs.
“If he has the balls to give interviews in media, he should also have the balls to face the Senate,” the senator said as his committee wrapped up three days of hearings on the Degamo killing.