Photo by Manman Dejeto/Rappler
MANILA, Philippines – The camp of Kingdom of Jesus Christ founder Pastor Apollo Quiboloy expressed disappointment with president-elect Rodrigo Duterte on Friday, May 20.
According to the religious leader’s spokesman Mike Abe, Quiboloy is “saddened” by Duterte’s rejection of his offer to help in the selection of his Cabinet appointees.
“Hindi nga po kinonsulta si Pastor. Hindi po talaga sinali sa mga meeting, mga plano sa selection process para sa i-aappoint sa gabinete at ibang posisyon sa executive department,” Abe told Rappler on Friday.
(Pastor is not being consulted. He is not being asked to join the meetings on the selection process for appointing members of the Cabinet and the executive department.)
Quiboloy, said Abe, felt affronted because he was one of Duterte’s long-time supporters aside from being his close friend for around 30 years. He described Quiboloy as Duterte’s “spiritual adviser.”
“Kaya nalulungkot nga si Pastor kasi binalewala nga siya. Hindi siya isinali ng mga taong nakapaligid kay mayor at maaaring si mayor ay mayroon ding pagkukulang, dahil hanggang ngayon, 11 days na ang nakaraan wala pong communication ang dalawa, hindi po nag-uusap, hindi po nagkikita,” said Abe.
(Pastor is saddened because it’s like he has been set aside. He is being excluded by the people around the Mayor and perhaps the Mayor also has shortcomings because up to now, 11 days have passed and the two have not communicated or seen each other.)
Duterte's camp has not responded to Rappler's requests for comment as of posting.
Quiboloy, a televangelist whose religious group Kingdom of Jesus Christ claims to have 6 million followers globally, has expressed his desire to help the Duterte presidency in any way possible.
But it seemed that some people in Duterte’s camp would not want him involved.
“Ginagawa ng paraan ni Pastor na siya’y lumapit para makatulong dahil gusto niya ng pagbabago at pagmamahal sa bayan pero hinaharang siya ng mga taong pumapaligid sa kanya [Duterte],” added Abe.
(Pastor is finding ways to approach the Mayor because he wants to help change the country but he is being blocked by people around the Mayor.)
Even Quiboloy’s offer of his private jet for Duterte to make regular trips from Malacañang to Davao City is on hold.
“It has not yet been discussed because the Mayor and Pastor are yet to meet,” said Abe.
Duterte drew flak for admitting he has received properties and cars from Quiboloy, gifts he insisted had no strings attached.
Since Duterte's mayorship, Quiboloy has been a constant presence in Duterte’s life. He claimed to have had a prophetic dream that foretold of Duterte’s “landslide” victory in the 2016 presidential elections. – Rappler.com
Pia Ranada covers the Office of the President and Bangsamoro regional issues for Rappler. While helping out with desk duties, she also watches the environment sector and the local government of Quezon City. For tips or story suggestions, you can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.