Teves blames BI over ordeal


Suspended lawmaker Arnie Teves is now pointing his fingers at the Bureau of Immigration for why, until now, he has yet to return to the country despite mounting calls for him to do so.

The embattled congressman has accused BI of causing his failure to return home, saying the agency is plotting an order instructing concerned officials to “instantaneously intercept” him upon his arrival in the Philippines.

“Why do they have such an order?” This is where we will witness their abuse of me. Worse, they have horrible plans for my life,” he claimed in Filipino in a Facebook video.

Teves said that, even more surprisingly, the interception order was issued before the filing of charges against him.

“This is an obvious political prosecution and an abuse of my human rights,” he pointed out. “Let’s assume it’s the benefit of the doubt that I have a case. Still, I am innocent until proven guilty.”

Nothing irregular

Therefore, he underlined that he must not be intercepted, captured, or imprisoned.

However, according to BI, which quickly set the record straight, monitoring the arrival of individuals involved in high-profile cases is a standard protocol.

“The Bl wishes to clarify that such instruction is merely a part of the Bl’s protocols in monitoring individuals who are subject of high-profile cases,” the BI said in response to Teves’ accusation.

Further, it said that it does not have the authority to detain Filipino nationals and that coordination with law enforcement agencies is essential for the procedures to be properly implemented.

Teves has been in hot water for months now after being tagged as the mastermind in the 4 March killing of his political rival and Negros Oriental Gov. Roel Degamo and eight others in the governor’s residence in Pamplona town.

Teves also faces complaints over loose firearms and a series of killings in the province in 2019.

He has been out of the country since 28 February. His failure to return home to report to work and perform his duties despite the expiration of his travel authority, triggered the House ethics panel to impose a two-month suspension.

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