Leyte Samar Daily Express
NAVAL, Biliran — Former Biliran Congressman Gerardo Espina Sr. last week formally filed his motion before the Department of Justice central office in Manila, seeking for the immediate transfer of the preliminary investigation in relation to the three criminal cases recently filed by the father of Representative Glen Chong against him and four another respondents.
The 73-year-old former solon told Leyte Samar Daily Express, while he was informed that the complainant of double murder, attempted murder and grave threats that was filed against him, former Biliran PNP provincial director Senior Supt.Alfredo Sabornido, and SPO2 Renato Saul, PO3 Jovito Cabillan and PO1 Charlie Ando, both of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, is also asking that the preliminary investigation will be conducted by the Regional State Prosecutors Office in Tacloban City, it would rather be held at the DOJ for fair justice from the side of the complainant and from the respondents.
“If the complainant has doubt on the credibility of the prosecutions office in Naval, mas maganda pa gawin ang preliminary investigation sa DOJ Manila and I am firm nobody can influence these people at least its outside the region,” he said.
The five respondents on July 25 have just submitted their counter-affidavits before the Naval prosecutions office, after an amendment complaint filed by Espina, Ando,
Cabillan and Saul for the said criminal charges in connection with the June 7 alleged ambush staged against the group of Chong while on their way home, resulting in the death of his two bodyguards and driver Jose Cases was also wounded in the same incident.
Earlier, police investigators had pinpointed politics and personal grudge as the possible motives of the incident.
While Espina maintains his innocence contrary to what the complainant alleged in his affidavit that Espina and four of the respondents conspired to commit the said crime, he expressed confidence that justice will be served to him as truth will really come out in the investigation.
“I know I can get away from this malicious machinations from the people who are now afraid to lose in the 2010 elections,” Espina said.
He confirmed from this interview that he is planning to run for Governor in 2010, while his son Governor Rogelio Espina, who is now in his last term, is also planning to seek the congressional seat against Rep. Glen Chong in the lone district of Biliran while his daughter Roselyn, who is now a councilor in Naval, is also being pushed to run for the mayoral post in Naval, the capital town of Biliran, under Bando Espina/KAMPI/LAKAS political party.
“I don’t want to end my career defeated, this time its different .. in fact In already completed holding meetings in all barangays in five out of 8 municipalities in Biliran,” Espina stressed.
He, however, admitted and was candid in saying that his health problem was the reason why he failed to get the majority votes in the 2007 elections against Chong.
“I was sick that time and I was not able to campaign personally.There were many things I was unable to do during the campaign period. I know I can make it in 2010 and my direction is firm and deliberate,” Espina said. (MIRIAM GARCIA DESACADA)