Solon to Quiboloy: Show up in hearings if you’ve nothing to hide

Mindanao solon to Quiboloy: Show up in hearings if you’ve nothing to hide

/ 08:28 PM February 28, 2024

A House lawmaker from Mindanao has called on Kingdom of Jesus Christ (KJC) founder and leader Apollo Quiboloy to attend hearings conducted by congressional panels if he has nothing to hide from the public.

Apollo Quiboloy

MANILA, Philippines — A House lawmaker from Mindanao has called on Kingdom of Jesus Christ (KJC) founder and leader Apollo Quiboloy to attend hearings conducted by congressional panels if he has nothing to hide from the public.

During the press briefing on Wednesday, Davao Oriental 2nd District Rep. Cheeno Miguel Almario said that while he is not a member of the House committee on legislative franchises, he understands why the panel issued a subpoena against Quiboloy.


Quiboloy is being asked to attend the said panel’s hearing this March 12, to answer questions regarding his alleged involvement in Sonshine Media Network International (SMNI) ownership structure.


“I’m not a member of the committee, but looking at it at least from my perspective personally, there is a process to everything.  And although we here, and it is also greatly recognized from the words of our former President to Pastor Quibuloy there are things that we also have to consider in terms of at least how we go through the process,” Almario told reporters at the House complex.

“Now we cannot deny that there is an ongoing subpoena, that there are ideas being bounced off, but the thing is you know, quite frankly speaking, if you have nothing to hide, then you have nothing to fear,” he added.

According to Almario, there is a logic behind a House panel’s decision to summon resource persons — it is also meant to give people a chance to air their side and defend themselves.

“And we just really want to present also — well not we, but I guess in the nature of our jobs, when we issue subpoenas, when we try to call also guest speakers, resource persons, we also want to hear from their side, so that we can have a better understanding on how to move forward with the things that we are trying to achieve, or we are trying to understand,” he said.

“So I guess, to put it simply, for this to be smooth sailing, there should be a transparent submission of information, at least one that is required by the Senate in this case, or in any matter,” he added.

Mandaluyong City Rep. Neptali Gonzales II meanwhile clarified that a subpoena is only an invite.  However, the lawmaker also noted that the committee is entitled to act in accordance with the actions taken by the invited resource person.


“You know, a subpoena is just an invitation.  It’s akin to filing a complaint to the fiscal, you will be subpoenaed to give you an opportunity to answer. If the subpoena is received and you don’t want to answer, it doesn’t mean that the fiscal has no right to make a resolution, you are just given an opportunity to answer […] If the legislative franchise issued a subpoena to him to appear, it’s an invitation,” Gonzales said.

“If he wants to attend, he can attend to air his side. If he doesn’t want to attend, then the committee is not without authority to decide the issue even without his testimony,” he added.

The House committee issued a subpoena against Quiboloy last February 19, for him to clear the ownership issue, as he has continuously evaded the hearings.  SMNI has been linked to Quiboloy, although company officials have denied accusations that the pastor is involved in the network’s operations.

READ: House summons Quiboloy to panel hearing on SMNI franchise 

Originally, the panel conducted hearings about SMNI after Laban Kasama ng Bayan host Jeffrey Celiz made false claims about Romualdez’ travel expenses on air.  However, the hearings led to the discovery of possible franchise violations.

According to Surigao del Sur 2nd District Rep. Johnny Pimentel, they are looking at three possible violations of SMNI’s franchise:

  • Section 4, which mandates SMNI or Swara Sug Media Corporation to “provide at all times sound and balanced programming”
  • Section 10, which mandates SMNI to inform Congress about the sale of the company to other owners or other major changes
  • Section 11, which mandates the SMNI to offer at least 30 percent of its stock to the public

READ: Surigao lawmaker wants SMNI franchise revoked amid violations 

It was also Pimentel who moved that a subpoena be issued against Quiboloy, after Gabriela party-list Rep. Arlene Brosas complained that the KJC leader has been absent for several times.

Brosas asked SMNI legal counsel Mark Tolentino as to why Quiboloy was getting preferential treatment from SMNI hosts if the pastor was not part of the network’s day-to-day operations.

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Tolentino said thanking Quiboloy was the prerogative of the hosts and was part of their free speech.

TAGS: Apollo Quiboloy, hearing, House

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