Local News: Possible Motive Behind Gequillana, Arles Murder Bared
A brother-in-law of the late Kabankalan RTC Judge Henry Arles, analyzed the possible motive for the killing of both, him and the late Ilog town Councilor Karim Gequillana, which he expounded in an interview with Aksyon Radyo Bacolod ace reporters, Charlie Pabular and Rex Cantong, which could be traceable to an anti-graft and corruption complaint against one of the key suspects in both their killings months back.
The anti-graft complaint concerned the supposed repair of an Ilog town service vehicle, a Pajero, which was the cause of the elevation of the complaint from the Quezon City Ombudsman to the Sandiganbayan’s Fifth Division which the other day according to its ruling, netted Ilog Mayor Paul Alvarez and 7 other co-accused all Ilog town officials and functionaries, a suspension from the anti-graft court’s three-man justices.
Alvarez and the seven other officials, named in the Sandiganbayan ruling, were meted a 90-day suspension order while Mayor Alvarez himself, who was also issued a hold-departure order. The supposed repair of the service vehicle, Mitsubishi Pajero was earlier allocated a budget of P100,000 by the city municipal government and another P100,000 for the alleged complete repair and which was authorized by Mayor Alvarez. But upon an investigation conducted by the Ombudsman and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), the vehicle had not been touched at all, or supposedly repaired.
Further elucidating on the issue, Britanico, Arles’ brother-in-law and uncle of the Arles siblings said, opposition councilor Karim Gequillana, during a birthday party of one of the Arles’ patriarchs had been seen carrying documents related to the case and that he had inquired from the late judge, as to whom he could approached in the Sandiganbayan in Quezon City, for possible follow-up in Alvarez’ and his cohorts’ anti-graft case. Judge Arles reportedly retorted that his son, Albert who had already resigned from the Sandiganbayan, could possibly help. That was that, and the analysis was that the late Judge and Albert, his son, were mistakenly thought of by the major suspects in his and Gequillana’s murder as behind the Ombudsman complaint and which was later elevated to the anti-graft court. With the elimination of both Gequillana, the councilor-whistleblower, and the Kabankalan magistrate, possibly those behind their killings, thought, that the complaint will no longer be pursued, Britanico said.
In more ways than one, Britanico had explained the ramifications of the anti-graft case being followed-up by the late Karim Gequillana.
Meanwhile, a highly-reliable source said, Ilog townsfolks have kept mum on issues related to Gequillana and the Arles murder case in unjustified fear, that something will happen to them. This was the atmosphere which pervaded the nation during the period that Marcos declared martial rule, and was broken only after the late martyr Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino was shot and killed in what is now NAIA tarmac. An ultimate people power revolt led to the late Ferdinand Marcos’ ouster more especially when his widow, the late President Corazon Aquino ran for the highest post in the country and led a determined push to oust the dictator.*