Bongbong visits ‘Ilocos Norte 6’ detained at HoR

June 15, 2017 - 7:58 PM
Bongbong Marcos file
Former senator Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. (Reuters file)

MANILA, Philippines – Former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on Thursday visited the six employees of the Ilocos Norte Provincial Office detained in the House of Representatives at the Batasan complex, and assured that he would help them get out.

They had been cited in contempt by the House committee on good government and public accountability during its probe into the alleged misuse of P66.45 million in tobacco funds.

The tobacco funds were used by the local government to buy motor vehicles.

The purchases were made under the term of incumbent Governor Imee Marcos, who is a political nemesis of Majority Leader Rodolfo Fariñas.

Marcos went to the Speaker’s Office to deliver a letter from the so-called “Ilocos Norte 6” appealing to Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez to respect a ruling of the Court of Appeals (CA) and release them.

“We are continuing to pursue all legal avenues for them to be released … It is very rare that any branch of the government defies the order of the judiciary,” he said.

The CA earlier directed the House sergeant-at-arms to explain why he should not be cited in contempt for defying the order of the appellate court to present the six employees before the court and eventually release them.

In reply on Wednesday, Alvarez said, “That’s gross ignorance of the law. Mga gago ‘yang tatlong justices na ‘yan (The three justices are stupid).”

Roland Detabali, the sergeant-at-arms, confirmed the visit by Marcos at around 1 p.m., staying for an hour after being met by House Secretary General Cesar Pareja.

Detabali said the six detainees are well cared for and walking exercises every day.

The Ilocos Norte employees – Genedine D. Jambaro, Encarnacion A. Gaor, Josephine P. Calajate, Eden C. Battulayan, Evangeline C. Tabuluog, and Pedro S. Agcaoili Jr – have been detained at the Batasan Complex since May 29.