MANILA –The testimony of retired SPO3 Arturo Lascañas should be heard by the Ombudsman and not by the Senate, Sen. Richard Gordon stressed anew.
Gordon made this remark after Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV on Monday released a copy of the affidavit of Lascañas where he relayed the origin of the so-called vigilante group Davao Death Squad.
Last week, Gordon describe it as a “slap in the face” to the Senate to hear Lascañas’ new testimony after he retracted his first testimony in a October 2016 Senate probe denying the existence of a death squad.
On February 20, however, Lascañas claimed that there was indeed a death squad hired to kill criminals and non-criminals in Davao City.
Gordon said that allowing Lascañas to make a new testimony in the Senate after he lied becomes “inconsistent” and appears “dubious.”
Sen. Panfilo Lacson, chair of the Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs, earlier said that he will schedule a date on the hearing on Lascañas’ testimony as soon as he receives a copy of the affidavit.
The probe into Lascañas’ testimony was referred to Lacson’s committee after 10 out of 24 senators voted to proceed with the hearing.
Lacson said that if there will be no intervention from any of his colleagues, it will remain in his committee.
In his 12-page affidavit, Lascañas said that he is now ready to “tell the truth” about the existence of the death squad after initially denying it in a Senate inquiry into extrajudicial killings last October 2016.
It was self-confessed hitman Edgar Matobato who first claimed that there was indeed a death squad. However, Lascañas rejected his claims noting that he feared for the safety of his family in Davao City.