negros Oriental Rep. Arnolfo Teves Jr. was given an ultimatum of 24 hours to physically attend the hearing of the House Committee on Ethics.
This is related to the committee's ongoing investigation on the expiration of Teves' travel authority on March 9.
Committee chair Rep. Felimon Espares said they did not allow Teves to participate in the committee's hearing via online. They wanted to hear Teves explain his continued absence from the committee hearing.
According to Espares, as soon as Teves fails to physically attend the hearing, it is here that they will decide whether he should remain as a Congressman or be expelled as a member of the Chamber.
“He (Teves) needs to physically attend the hearing, if he fails we will finally decide on his sanctions and he will be met with disciplinary actions,” said Espares.
Meanwhile, Espares refused to detail to the media which country Teves is in after Justice Secretary Boying Remulla said he is no longer in the United States.
It will be recalled that Speaker Romualdez appealed to Teves to return to the country and face his case.
House gives Teves a 24 hour ultimatum
Through his legal counsel, Atty Ferdinand Topacio, Teves asked the House to allow him to make a privileged speech via online to answer the issues against him.
Topacio also said Negros Oriental Rep. Arnolfo Teves Jr. could not simply be ousted as a member of the House.
He responded to the appeal yesterday by Pamplona Mayor Janice Degamo, widow of Gov. Degamo to the Chamber to dismiss Teves as a member of the Chamber.
According to Topacio, first of all, his client has not been proven guilty and is only a suspect as per the accusations.
“Rep. Teves seeks the kind of understanding of his colleagues in the House during these trying times in his life where he is accused of certain crimes that he did not commit,” said Topacio.
“Hopeful that as lawmakers you are all aware of the principles that a person is innocent until proven otherwise with finality by a court law, and that all persons are entitled to the full protection of his Constitutional rights,” he added.
Visit our Facebook page for more news updates.