MANILA, Philippines (1st UPDATE) – Murder convict Rolito Go has not been abducted but is with his daughter, according to relatives of Go's victim Eldon Maguan.
In a statement, the Maguan family said it is deeply saddened and grieved by the news that Go escaped from the New Bilibid Prisons (NBP) in Muntinlupa City last night.
“Contrary to statements that Go was believed to have been abducted, our sources say he is presently with his daughter, who is an intern at the Chinese General Hospital. The family finds it difficult to believe that Go can be kidnapped or abducted and even held for ransom while he was safely inside the Bureau of Prisons in Muntinlupa,” the family said.
Maguan’s brother Elliot said the family is not convinced that Go was abducted while inside the prison facility, calling the scenario “preposterous.”
“That has been a big shock to us, there has to be an explanation. We are not convinced about the story of the abduction. It’s preposterous that something like that will happen inside the prison,” he said.
“What we are asking for is for the government to implement the most basic rules that they themselves created. We just hope that they could follow their own rules already,” he added.
Go was convicted for shooting and killing Eldon Maguan, 25, during a road rage incident in 1991. Go has applied for executive clemency at least 3 times but these have been denied.
Justice Secretary Leila De Lima earlier confirmed that Go has been unaccounted for at the New Bilibid Prisons (NBP) since 11:30 last night during the inmates' head count.
She said Go was last seen at the Ina ng Awa Church in the minimum security portion of the prison. Go's nephew, Clemence Yu, is also unaccounted for, de Lima said.
De Lima said relatives of Go and Yu were able to contact the 2 via phone at 7 a.m. Wednesday.
Both claimed they were abducted and a P1 million ransom demanded by a still unidentified abductor for their safe release, she said.
The justice chief has instructed National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Director Nonnatus Rojas to investigate the incident.
Go's custodian, Prison Guard 1 Serafin Geronimo, Prison Security Guard 1 Edgardo Cruz, who is the commander of the guards and PSO1 Gabriel Magan, the chief of the minimum security compound, have been sacked.
The Maguan family said Go’s disappearance is the second time he has escaped prison, after bolting Pasig City Jail in November 1993.
Go was then captured in 1996 and had since been detained in Muntinlupa.
Go was on the last leg of his prison sentence and was scheduled for release on June 17, 2013.
The Maguan family, however, has objected to Go's early release, insisting that he should complete his maximum 30-year sentence especially since he has escaped detention twice, making him ineligible for clemency.
They urged the Department of Interior and Local Government to exert all efforts to find Go and place him under maximum security once he is re-arrested.
They also asked the Department of Justice to make Go “ineligible for any parole and not to grant him benefits inside prison.” -- Reports from Ces Drilon and Anthony Taberna, ABS-CBN News