PNP to probe journalists, lawyers in Duterte ‘ouster matrix’
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) will probe the journalists and lawyers in the controversial ouster matrix released by Malacañang, PNP chief General Oscar Albayalde announced on Tuesday, April 23.
“We conduct validation so that when they ask for our comment or our own information, we can give them information quickly, at least we will be ready, and not waiting for an order,” Albayalde said in a mix of English and Filipino in a briefing in Camp Crame.
Albayalde emphasized that they are conducting their probe under their own “initiative” and without an order from President Rodrigo Duterte. This comes despite Albayalde still not knowing where the controversial matrix came from.
He said the units to be in charge of the probe are their Directorate for Investigation and Detective Management and the Directorate for Intelligence. The scope of their probe, Albayalde said, will cover intelligence validation, and if validation is completed, criminal investigation.
“If evidence so warrants there can always be cases filed against them,” Albayalde said.
What ouster matrix? Albayalde was asked about the controversial ouster matrix released by Malacañang on Monday, April 22.
It consisted of journalists from Rappler, Vera Files, and the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism and lawyers from the National Union of People’s Lawyers linked to the elusive man called Bikoy who has been releasing videos linking the Duterte family to illegal drugs.
The matrix has been condemned by all tagged groups, calling the matrix "rubbish", "garbage", and outright "false." (READ: Are Duterte's multi-million-peso intel funds achieving their purpose?)
The origin of the matrix appears to be unknown except for the President himself.
Presidential Spokesman and Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo on Monday said he did not know how the matrix was formed and how it works, while PNP chief Albayalde said he has not spoken with their top intelligence officials to determine whether they contributed to the document. – Rappler.com
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