Iglesia seeks to ban visitors of ousted Manalo siblings
The Iglesia ni Cristo, as represented by the religious sect’s minister of the gospel Radel Cortez, has asked the Quezon City Regional Trial Court to stop visitors who are not related to the Manalo family from entering the Tandang Sora compound where the executive minister’s brother and sister were believed to be holed up in.
Trixie Angeles, counsel for respondents Felix Nathaniel “Angel” Manalo, Lolita Manalo-Hemedez and three others, said on Wednesday that even if the INC owned the property, it could not just isolate the occupants.
“They’re isolating the people who are inside. Even if I was renting, let’s say, an apartment, you cannot prevent me from having visitors when I’m not under arrest. Unless the petitioner here says these people are in fact under detention,” Angeles told reporters on Wednesday.
In its petition, INC asked the court to stop the Manalo siblings from allowing entry of Roel Rosal, Shirley Rosal, Joy Yuson and any other persons into the property.
Roel Rosal and Joy Yuson were said to have acted as leaders during an assembly in the compound where several armed men were seen.
“Petitioner respectfully submits a temporary restraining order and/or writ of preliminary injunction are necessary not only to secure the safety of the lives and property of the INC or the respondents, and of their neighbors during the pendency of the trial of this case, but to maintain the tranquility of the vicinity of the neighborhood,” the INC said.
During Wednesday’s hearing at the Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 81, Judge Madonna Echiverri informed the parties that she is a faculty member of New Era University’s College of Law where the INC’s counsel, Serafin Cuevas Jr., is the dean.
“So we moved for the inhibition of the judge and the case will be raffled off. We’ll wait for the notice of next hearing and the new judge,” Angeles said.
Angel and Lolita, siblings of INC executive minister Eduardo Manalo, were believed to be holed up in the Tandang Sora compound after Angel and their mother Tenny came out with an online video in July saying their lives were in danger.
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