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Quiboloy camp asks SC to stop Senate arrest

MANILA, Philippines — The camp of Kingdom of Jesus Christ (KOJC) founder and leader Apollo Quiboloy has asked the Supreme Court (SC) to stop the Senate from enforcing its arrest order against him, calling it “unjust and unconstitutional.”

The Senate’s issuance of the arrest order was in response to his refusal to appear before the chamber’s committee on women, children, family relations and gender equality – chaired by Sen. Risa Hontiveros – to answer allegations of human trafficking, rape, sexual abuse and violence leveled against him and his sect by former members.

A lawyer for Quiboloy who declined to be identified said his SC petition was for the issuance of a temporary restraining order and/or writ of preliminary injunction to stop the Senate from implementing the arrest order as well as from demanding the KOJC leader’s attendance at Senate hearings.

The petitioner said the investigation being conducted by the Senate violates Quiboloy’s constitutional rights to due process and against self-incrimination.

He argued that the Senate hearings “do not serve any legislative purpose” and that the Senate probe was tantamount to usurpation of judicial functions.

Quiboloy’s presence, he claimed, would only be used to initiate cases against him and bolster those already filed in court against the religious leader.

He argued that the Senate hearings were “unjust,” as the chamber had already concluded that Quiboloy was guilty of the crimes attributed to him.

“The investigation is likewise unlawful and unconstitutional as it encroaches on the functions that pertain solely to the judicial branch of government,” the petition read.

“It is evident that respondents are using and abusing their legislative power to secure his conviction in any manner, on the basis of one-sided statements of witnesses, uncorroborated by documentary evidence, sourced and presented by the respondents alone,” it added.

Quiboloy’s camp lamented how the Senate hearings have evolved into a “public mockery” of him.

“By compelling petitioner to appear before them, respondents have been violating petitioner’s constitutional rights against self-incrimination and due process,” Quiboloy’s legal counsel