Interviewer: Hello Minister Bolahan, how are you and your church doing these days?
Minister Bolahan: Very fine, thank you!
Interviewer: You are a staunch supporter of ousted CJ Corona, at least that is the public perception and I thought Manalo and your church might have been affected one way or another by the Impeachment Court conviction/ouster of him, how would you comment about that?
Minister Bolahan: Well, maybe that’s the common perception but not actually the situation on the ground as far as the church is concerned. We are not affected at all.
Interviewer: But the final outcome of the trial might have exposed some weaknesses in your sphere of influence, isn’t it?
Minister Bolahan: Not necessarily and let me tell you why. The INCM surely knows what it is supposed to be doing especially when it comes to economics, politics and the likes. An organization, whether Non-government organization (NGO), government organization (GO) or even religious organization must co-mingle among themselves in the field of politics to further their respective interest. What is prohibited is the deliberate co-mingling of undeclared funds that may prove prejudicial to the interest of the BIR.
When the church held its Grand Evangelical mission attended to by millions of its followers at the Luneta, the same was a calculated political move under the guise of bible exposition just to impress upon the politicians the INCM’s electoral clout as evidenced by the audience’s size. It was intended to serve as reminder to political candidates in next year election that we could make or break them. That, is the only ultimate objective we have and the INCM support for Corona was just a ploy.
Interviewer: I don’t quite understand, please elaborate further.
Minister Bolahan: Supporting anybody or any group/organization for that matter through thick and thin is never our cup of tea. Our vested interest takes precedence over anything else come hell or high water. Hence we deemed it counterproductive to support Corona through and through knowing he is doomed and therefore, he is a liability rather than an asset.
Interviewer: But how about the news report that INCM was lobbying for Corona’s acquittal days before he was convicted, how would you explain about this?
Minister Bolahan: That particular report was inaccurate although we have indeed sent our representatives to touch base with the political personalities concerned but not necessarily to lobby for outright acquittal. We were more importantly concerned with determining the pulse of the Senator Judges, some sort of survey and evaluation as basis of our decision. Just like during election, the INCM relies on last minute surveys to endorse the sure winner, hahaha! Kailangan segurista di ba? We cannot afford to endorse a losing candidate considering the inaccuracy of our voting population record which in reality cannot guarantee candidate’s victory. In much the same way, why die lobbying for Corona’s sake when his case is a losing proposition? Such is a self-defeating situation, right?
Interviewer: You seemed to impress upon me that there was a last minute INCM withdrawal of support for Corona due to the hopelessness of his case, would that be accurate?
Minister Bolahan: That too is inaccurate because as far as INCM is concerned, our support for Corona is conditional in the sense that if he turned out to be a liability (which is now the case), we unilaterally reserve the right to withdraw that conditional support in favor of INCM’s greater interest. Moreover, what had happened was not last minute withdrawal but more accurately, withdrawal of support during the last days. The phrase “during the last days” is much too significant to INCM since our acknowledged Messenger was appointed “during the last days”.
Interviewer: How about the meeting between Noynoy and Manalo at the INCM Central Office in Diliman, Q. C.,a day before Corona was scheduled to appear before the impeachment court? I would like to believe that the meeting had so much to do with the on-going impeachment trial then. Was it really the case? Can you give me a glimpse on what really transpired during the meeting?
Minister Bolahan: We took advantage of that situation to inform the President regarding our withdrawal of support for Corona which we certainly believed made him happy. At the same time, we made a promise to support his would-be senatorial candidate in next year’s election as we have likewise begun lobbying for the possible appointment of Associate Justice Presbiterio Velasco as the next SC Chief Justice. We hope to have a better relationship with the President in the very near future; after all we used to support his candidacy as Senator and as President. He has our commitment if ever but he has yet to positively reciprocate.
Interviewer: Last question Minister Bolahan, what can you say about Corona’s theatrical challenge to his political detractors for them to also unconditionally disclose their dollar accounts?
Minister Bolahan: Well, as you have said it’s just a theatrical challenge which may therefore necessitate a theatrical answer like what Corona’s political detractors kept on answering in resounding refrain: We do not have to sign waiver to unconditionally disclose the secrecy of our dollar accounts. We are not the one’s on trial here!
Interviewer: Thank you for your time Minister Bolahan!