SENATOR Jinggoy Ejercito Estrada raised the need to provide additional security for potential witnesses in the case of abused househelp Elvie Vergara to ensure that they can testify freely.
Estrada made this call following a recent attempt on the life of Vergara’s former colleague identified only as “Dodong”, who expressed his willingness to testify against employers France and Pablo “Jerry” Ruiz.
“Protecting the witnesses is not just a legal obligation, it is a moral imperative,” Estrada stated during a privilege speech.
Senator Francis Tolentino assured that kasambahay Elvie Vergara will still have proper legal representation despite withdrawal of lead counsel Att. Jovito Gambol in the case against employers Ruiz.
“Mayroon naman po tayo yung Philippine Legal Justice Center(PLJC) na atin pong na -assign na mag-collaborate po, kaya may abodado pa ho si Manang Elvie Vergara,” Tolentino said.
Tolentino, chair of the Senate Committee on Justice and Human Rights, also assured Elvie, her family, and star witness Dodong that the panel will continue the hearings.
PLJC is the free legal aid clinic founded by Tolentino to help qualified indigents.
Tolentino confirmed that two unknown gunmen fired shots at the primary witness in the case of Vergara.
Reports claimed that two men wearing bonnet forcibly entered the residence of star witness Alias Dodong in the Municipality of Paluan around 8:30 Tuesday.
Both Tolentino and Estrada condemned the attempted murder on “Dodong.”