I’m sorry for telling the truth on KAPA

By: Atty. Ruphil F. Bañoc June 14,2019 - 08:29 AM


“Not everyone who calls me ‘Lord, Lord’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only those who do what my Father in heaven wants them to do.” – Jesus Christ (Matthew 7: 21)

Last Friday I received a text message from our Cebu Daily News Digital editor Edra Benedicto informing me of the thousands of engagements in my column on that same day entitled, “SEC warning on KAPA and others.” 

That triggered me to read some of the comments in my column. I expected that there are different reactions from our readers. True enough there are those who appreciate my article, but there are also those who did not. I respect them all as I am an advocate of freedom of expression.

I just noticed that there are member-donors of KAPA (Kabus Padatuon) Kapa-Community Ministry International, Inc., who lambasted me for being allegedly biased in both my column and radio commentary as I did not get the side of their founder, Pastor Joel Apolinario. Some of the comments are even below-the-belt and unchristian.  I understand the sensitivity of the issue as it involves faith and money.

Let me explain what really happened. When I learned that KAPA entered in Cebu, I interviewed live in my Straight to the Point radio program aired over DYHP RMN Cebu Atty. Alma Dalena of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as to the status of the said organization. She said that SEC had given an advisory against KAPA, issued a Cease and Desist Order and finally cancelled its registration for doing business in violation of the Securities Regulation Code. 

Thereafter, I tried my best to get the side of Pastor Joel Apolinario, the founder of KAPA. We even asked the assistance from our sister stations in RMN Surigao and General Santos so that we can conduct an exclusive interview. We got 2 contact numbers of Apolinario, but the first cannot be reached, while the second just kept on ringing and left unanswered. 

As to those who made unchristian comments on my article, let me explain that my intention was good and sincere. I just warned the people to be cautious in investing their hard-earned money. I just reminded them so that there will be no repeat of what happened to Aman Futures Group Philippines Inc., in Pagadian City that many were victimized because of the very good promise of returns. 

The same with KAPA, the promise of return is very good at 30 percent per month. What makes it unique because it is registered as a religious corporation and accepting investments in the guise of donations. 

Financial experts already said that the promise of KAPA is impossible. Even the Cebu Bankers Club warned the people not to be victimized by scams that at first, members can claim their profits so that they can be made as living testimony, but later on it will collapse. 

On the alleged existence of KAPA for 6 years as some wanted to project, is not true. Record shows that it was just registered with SEC on March 3, 2017 with registration number CN 201707724.  It started as Kapa Coop Convenience Store and General Merchandise in 2016 in Bislig City, but it was closed for non compliance of the law and soliciting investments with a promise to return the principal amount plus 30 percent interest per month. 

So those who said that KAPA existed for 6 years did not know the background of KAPA. Did they not know also if Pastor Apolinario was charged with 102 counts of syndicated estafa that led to the issuance of 27 warrants of arrest? Did they not know that Pastor Apolinario moved south after recognizing that KAPA operation in Bislig City was in trouble with the local government unit (LGU)?

 If telling the truth over the radio and in my column was wrong and anti-poor as per KAPA member-donors interpretation, then my apology. But my conscience is clear. 

Last Saturday, the big blow was President Rodrigo Duterte’s order to NBI and PNP to shut down KAPA because it is too good to be true and so it is fraud. The search warrants issued by the Court were already implemented to the different KAPA offices. 

With this KAPA controversy, Cebu Arhbishop Jose Palma also cautioned the people to be careful in investing their hard-earned money. Will they accuse the good Archbishop of being anti-poor also?  

Again, just to buy peace, my apology to the member-donors for telling the truth. I expect them to be forgiving as Christ preaches forgiveness. After all God can read if they are sincere in their claim to be religious and generous when they donate money for their ministry!

For those who continue to make unchristian comments, I would like to remind them of a Biblical verse which says,” for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” – (Matthew 12:34).


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TAGS: CDN Digital opinion, Cebu columnists, columnist Ruphil Bañoc, KAPA, Straight to the Point

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