6 Kapa members commit suicide in wake of raid

Embattled Pastor Joel Apolinario, founder of the Kabus Padatoon (Kapa) Community Ministry, called on members to stay strong following the closure of the religious corporation’s operations. 

6 Kapa members commit suicide in wake of raid
KAPA SUPPORTERS. Members of different religious organizations gather at the Max's Restaurant in Quezon City Saturday to support the embattled Kapa Religious Ministry—the kind of support is not clear—while announcing they will also rate President Rodrigo Duterte when he addresses his countrymen during his forthcoming State of the Nation Address. Manny Palmero
In a telephone interview uploaded on Youtube, Apolinario revealed that President Rodrigo Duterte’s recent directive to close down Kapa’s operations affected its members. 

According to him, at least half a dozen Kapa members had committed suicide because of despair and hopelessness, fearing they would lose their life savings.

The claim could not be immediately independently confirmed.

“In this time, even though there are challenges, I hope you remain hopeful, still pray to the Lord, and do not lose hope. From what I’ve heard, six people already hung themselves, so this hurts my heart because they became members of Kapa to live,” Apolinario said.

“I am now asking you a favor not to resort to suicide, do not lose hope,” he added. 

Last week, Duterte ordered the Philippine National Police and the National Bureau of Investigation to shut down Kapa’s investment scams.

READ: Founder says he drew Quiboloy’s ire for ‘poaching’

Some 50,000 member-donors of the Surigao del Sur-based religious corporation gathered and appealed to Duterte to reconsider his order. 

But Duterte stood pat in his earlier claim that Kapa was a swindling scam, with Malacañang supporting his order. 

According to the Kapa official, the religious corporation’s officers and businesses have been closed down such as fishing boats, rice and banana farms, poultry school, and a hospital.

Apolinario also bared he could not distribute salaries to some 5,000 employees, putting the blame on the government for their dire financial straits.

“Accounts have been frozen. Who would benefit now from our businesses? The government cannot even fulfill their promise to give jobs to people,” he said. 

Still, Apolinario remains hopeful that Duterte will change his mind, calling on Kapa members to spread how the religious corporation helped them out of the “hell of poverty” through the use of Facebook, YouTube, and other social media platforms. 

Considering the dilemma as a “legal battle,” the Kapa founder then assured members his lawyers would continue to fight for their right as a religious group to take donations.

READ: ‘Kapa in large-scale estafa’

READ: DOJ issues lookout bulletin vs. Kapa execs, incorporators, raps up

Topics: Joel Apolinario , Kabus Padatoon (Kapa) Community Ministry , Rodrigo Duterte
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