'Anong dahilan niya para i-video kami?'
MANILA - Two drivers of the three vans in a convoy caught on video supposedly harassing another motorist in a traffic altercation along Aurora Boulevard have denied using "wang-wangs" or blaring sirens, contrary to the claim of the man who captured the footage.
The men, identified only as Gil and Mark, surfaced Friday to explain their side after the video went viral online.
Speaking to radio dzMM, Gil insisted that their vans had no "wang-wangs," contrary to claims by motorist Timothy John Remorca.
"Napakalaking bawal po niyan, alam naman po namin yan. Hindi ko po sasakyan ang tumutunog ng 'wang-wang,'" Gil said. "Di ko po masabi. Pwede pong ambulansya o kotse na naharangan ko."
Remorca, in a separate interview on dzMM, however maintained that the drivers of the convoy of three white Hi-Ace Grandia vans used sirens and also flashers as they weaved through traffic.
Remorca said the convoy also beat the red light at the intersection of Aurora Boulevard and Broadway Avenue.
"Akala ko ambulansya, so pagbibigyan ko na sana. Hinanap ko yung ambulance sign, wala. Pagtingin ko, puro club sticker yung nakalagay, heavily tinted pa," he said.
"Yung 'wang-wang' nasa loob ng windshield nila, yung nakatago. Yung flasher na red and white, yung parang ambulansya, merong umiilaw nung time na yun habang nagwa-'wang-wang.' Hindi nagbubusina, 'wang-wang' lang nang 'wang-wang."
Curious as to why the vans, which he surmised were private vehicles, were using sirens, Remorca said he decided to follow them.
"Ang ginawa nang-ipit pa lalo, nang-aasar pa. Dun ko na sinimulan 'yung video. Dun niyo makikita na parang medyo nasa harap ko 'yung van at sinusundan ko sila," he said.
Gil admitted that they were in a convoy but denied that they committed traffic violations.
Gil said he is engaged in a buy-and-sell business and they were only in a hurry as he was supposed to meet with a seller of a Montero vehicle at that time.
He claimed that he was also carrying a big amount of money -- about P780,000.
He denied that their convoy blocked Remorca's car, saying it was Remorca who cut into their convoy. This, he said, scared him, noting that his friend Mark had earlier experienced being victimized by riding-in-tandem carjackers.
"May dala-dala akong pera, nagpasama ako kay Mark dahil siya nakakita ng kotse. Ngayon, totoo po na convoy kami, pero mabagal po. Nagtataka ko kay Timothy, lumapit siya sa likod ko at ginalit niya yung makina ng kotse na sinasakayan niya. Nagbagal ako nun, nagbigay ako ng daan.
"Nung nakalusot siya, hinabol niya yung dalawang kasama ko. Pero nung ginawa niyang nagda-drive siya, ginagalit niya yung makina, tinawagan ko po yung kaibigan ko dahil nga may dala kong pera. Sabi ko, 'Ano 'to? Meron akong nasa likuran ko.' Kaya ang ginawa po nung kaibigan ko, nakatawid po si Mark, hinihintay ako sa left turn para makaliko kami. Nung papasok po ako, kakaliwa, nagalit na naman po yung makina niya (Timothy), hinarangan niya ko. Eh di kinabahan na ako," Gil narrated.
Gil also admitted that they had tried to take Remorca's cellphone but only because they were frightened. He also admitted opening the door of Remorca's vehicle in an attempt to "invite" him to see what's inside his van.
"Inaanyaya ko po siya bumaba. Sinabi ko pa sa kanya, 'Halika, bumaba ka. Tingnan mo kung sinong sakay namin.' Ang balak ko ipakikita ko sa kanya yung perang dala-dala ko," Gil said.
"Anong dahilan niya para i-video kami?"
"Paano naman po kung gamitin niya sa kasamaan ang video na yun? Halimbawa ho, alam naman nating may dalang pera. O, natitiktikan pala. Di namin alam. Pwedeng ikapahamak po namin yun," Mark added.
Gil said the other man in the video who identified himself as a policeman is really a cop.
Remorca pointed out that the supposed policeman failed to show proper identification. The alleged cop also only said they were headed to "Central" when confronted about their destination.
Asked about this, Gil said: "Di ko na po narinig yun eh."
Sought for their comment, the Quezon City Police District (QCPD) said they do not recognize the alleged cop in the video.
Sr. Supt. Victor Arevalo, chief of the San Juan Police station, where Remorca filed a complaint regarding the incident, said they are still verifying the identities of the personalities involved.
"Nakita natin yung altercation, iyung wang-wang, siyempre pinagbabawal po yun dahil hindi naman sila marked vehicle. At titingnan rin po natin kung ano yung kanilang purpose, bakit medyo malakas ang loob nila," Arevalo said.
The Land Transportation Office (LTO), meanwhile, has also started investigating the incident, which spokesperson Jason Salvador described as "alarming."
Salvador told radio dzMM that they have traced the three Hi-Ace Grandia vans to private citizens. He said they will issue show cause orders against the vans' owners to hear their side.
"Kung totoo pong nag-'wang-wang' sila, bawal na bawal po yan, at pangalawa, kung talagang may mga ganitong pananakit eh of course di naman po natin papayagan yan," he said.
"Under the law, tanging yung mga law enforcement vehicles lang at mga ambulansya ang ina-allow po na gumamit ng mga blinkers," he added.
Salvador also addressed reports that using "wang-wangs" may be the gimmick of colorum vehicles to prevent being apprehended by traffic enforcers.
"Yan nga po ang nakakabahala sa insidente na yan. Apparently, nag-evolve na naman sila sa kanilang modus operandi. Dati siguro naglalagay lamang sila ng mga sticker o nagpapanggap na mga uniformed personnel. Pero ngayon, may 'wang-wang' na. So titingnagn rin natin yung anggulo na yan."
Gil and Mark, for their part, said they are willing to amicably settle the matter with Remorca. But they are asking for a public apology.
"Linisin niya. Linisan niya dahil ang dami pong comments. May mga anak po ako... Sa akin, walang problema makipagayos. Pero ayusin niya rin yung ginawa niyang gulo," said Gil.
"Meron pong comment naglalagay daw po kami ng drugs," added Mark. "Mag-public apology rin po siya."