The self-confessed assassin who tagged President Rodrigo Duterte of leading the 'Davao death squad' is currently under a lawmaker's care, days after Senate refused to provide sanctuary.
Senator Antonio Trillanes IV on Tuesday said Senate witness Edgar Matobato is currently under his care.
"For now, I’m arranging his temporary security and sanctuary, but yesterday it was clarified—I asked the status of the protective custody, and it was ruled that the committee ruling of providing protective custody to Mr. Matobato stays," said Trillanes in an interview with ANC's Headstart with Karen Davila Tuesday.
Last week, Senate President Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III refused to provide security for Matobato, who testified that then-Davao City Mayor Duterte commissioned a hit squad called the "Lambada Boys" to kill four bodyguards of a rival politician, a hard-hitting radio anchor and his sister's lover. The death squad also supposedly targeted criminals.
READ: What a self-confessed DDS hitman told the Senate
Trillanes said although Senator Leila de Lima was ousted as Justice Committee Chair, new Committee Chairman Richard Gordon assured him that Matobato's testimony will be heard.
"I volunteered to Senator Gordon that in case he wants to vet Mr. Matobato, or conduct a preliminary interview with him, I’ll make Mr. Matobato available," he said.
He maintained, Matobato's claims of events that happened from 1988 to 2013 are "directly relevant and related" to the proposed Senate Resolution no. 9, because it draws similarities to the present war on drugs.
"The testimony of Mr. Matobato, in fact, established a pattern of behavior of some law enforcement units that, he showed, he demonstrated that in all cases of supposed legit police operations, they were actually executing these suspected criminals, and to cover for their actions the would say nanlaban [fought back] and would plant these 38 caliber pistols. It’s the same pattern that’s happening now," he said.