Edgar Matobato, the self-confessed hitman who claimed that President Rodrigo Duterte ordered people to be assassinated while sitting as Davao City mayor, said on Friday that he was tired of running, and that he is sorry for all the lives he took. Matobato testified on September 15 at the Senate hearing on the extrajudicial killings linked to Duterte's drug war, saying he had killed more than 50 people while he was a part of the notorious Davao Death Squad. The president called his statements mere fabrications. Since his court appearance, the witness has been kept in a safe house of a senator, guarded by former soldiers.
"I'm tired of running," Matobato told Reuters. "I apologize to all the people I have wronged, those I killed." Matobato appeared relaxed in the interview. He divulged the reason why he confessed in the Senate inquiry. "My conscience is bothering me. I want to correct the mistakes and I want justice for those people," he said, referring to his victims. He also said that another reason for his move to come clean was because his former allies tried to frame him for the murder of a businessman. "I don't care if I die now, I have accepted my fate... I just don't want to go to jail. They had better kill me, hang me for all my sins." he said. He said his fate is now up to God. Duterte, since sitting as the president on June 30, has denied all accusations of his alleged involvement in vigilantism.
Matobato even said that there was an instant the president himself "finished a guy off". Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre described Matobato's testimony as "lies, fabrications and a product of a fertile and a coached imagination". Matobato claimed that he never received a formal education and lived for years like a hunter preying on criminals and drug addicts. "All my life, I was like a dog being sent here and there and made to do things. I obeyed them, no questions asked. "My only appeal is spare my family," he said. He said he was being guarded, but was frustrated with his life in hiding. "It's very difficult, I can't go where I want to go. I only stay here all day." he said. "I'm tired of this life." he added. MJMSOURCE: ABS-CBN News
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