Kapa donors' lawsuit vs Duterte, et al 'riddled with defects' - SEC chief


Posted at Jun 27 2019 12:18 PM | Updated as of Jun 27 2019 12:28 PM

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MANILA — The head of the Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday said there were many defects in the lawsuit filed before the Supreme Court against him and President Rodrigo Duterte for shutting down controversial religious group Kapa Community Ministry International (Kapa Ministry).

The Rhema Int'l Livelihood Foundation or Cirfund, in a petition filed last , sought the impeachment of Duterte, who tagged the ministry in a supposed investment scam. The petitioners also sought P3 billion in damages from Duterte and SEC Chairman Emilio Aquino.

"On the face makikita na natin na maraming defects," Aquino said of the lawsuit.

The petition, he told radio DZMM, treated him as a private respondent.

"May kasama rin impeachment (it also includes impeachment)," he added.

Impeachment complaints should be filed with the Office of the Secretary General of the House.

Kapa's lawyer Al Vitangcol earlier denied that ministry members are promised a 30-percent return for their donations, saying that worshipers instead get "blessings."

Aquino, however, said state investigators who posed as Kapa members got payouts.

"Very clear naman po na investment iyan (that's clearly an investment) because they want a return of their money," the SEC head said.

"As far as religious freedom is concerned, hindi rin naman po absolute iyan kasi for one, from the moment na the practice already affects other people, pumapasok na po ang state d'yan," he added.

(As far as religious freedom is concerned, that is not absolute because from the moment that the practice already affects other people, the state enters the issue.)

Pastor Joel Apolinario, founder of Kapa-Community Ministry International, has gone into hiding amid a manhunt operation against him