By FLORO MERCENE
Does the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), have a closed and shut case against Kabus Padatoon Community International Ministry (Kapa)?
Maybe not. As early as March, 2017, when Kapa was barely a year old, the SEC enforcement and investor protection department warned the public about Kapa’s investment program, essentially involving donations from members. If the SEC had the goods against Kapa, it should have acted on it promptly.
Curiously, SEC moved against Kapa after a one-on-one between President Duterte and Pastor Apollo Quiboloy, leader of an influential religious sect in Mindanao. This gave rise to suspicions that the emerging prosecution/persecution of Kapa was being waged upon Quiboloy’s behest.
Anyway, there is a world of difference between investments and donations. Investments are stakes put up with the anticipation it would earn returns, profits, or payback. Donations are gestures of generosity, an act of kindness out of the goodness of one’s heart. If there are some expectations, it is in the form of self-gratification, of heavenly, blissful feeling of spiritual deliverance.
So, government prosecutors might be having difficulty proving the guilt of Kapa leaders beyond reasonable doubt — as required by the law.
We still have to hear any Kapa member claiming they were robbed. Three supposed victims who are non-Kapa members were presented as complainants, presumably pressured.
Kapa’s strength is estimated to be anywhere from five million to 10 million, a huge number in any language.
About 50,000 of them turned out during a recent rally in General Santos City to categorically express support for their embattled leaders headed by founder Joel Apolinario.
A truck driver who was interviewed, Rommel Borres, from Tacurong City said he does not regret parting with P40,000 when he joined the group in January, 2018. Borres said when he learned about the trouble confronting Kapa, he checked his account and was surprised to find it had ballooned to P120,000 with P36,000 interest on the side. He withdrew the P36,000, leaving the P120,000 untouched.
Another member posted on Twitter that she was able to pursue a college education courtesy of Kapa.
Does giving away money make Apolinario and company bad persons?
Tags: Floro Mercene