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I was ordered to kneel and kiss hand – councilor’s son

Pacifico “Jun” Adorio III*

For fear of his life, the son of a councilor in Victorias City followed the orders of mayoralty aspirant Javi Benitez to kneel before him and kiss his hand to pacify the latter.

Pacifico “Jun” Adorio III, son of re-electionist Councilor Virginia Adorio, was in tears as he recounted the March 28 incident when Benitez summoned him to explain why he liked the post of a certain Alberto Lacson who published on social media a photo of Javi, his father Albee, a mayoralty candidate in Bacolod, and his uncle, Third District Rep. Francisco Benitez, with a negative caption and a red X mark.

Interestingly, Adorio’s mother is seeking another term under Benitez’s ticket.

Adorio told reporters that since he is not savvy with social media, he immediately liked the post seeing that it showed the candidates he was campaigning for rain drenched, yet people still gave them a warm reception.

“When I saw it, I thought to myself it was an inspiring post until my attention was called that it had a negative caption.”

Still in tears, Adorio continued that he repeatedly apologized to Javi who summoned him on March 28 at the second-floor cafe at BBB Arcade.

He also requested the young Benitez to relay as well his sincere apologies to his dad and uncle.

Also at the meeting with the young Benitez were Provincial Board Member Jovie Pepillo, Councilor JunB Bantug, Victorias ABC President RJ Sablan of Barangay 2 and James Gulmatico, Javi’s campaign manager.

“I asked for apologies. But he went on to accuse me of shouting (endorsing) the name of his rival, Vice Mayor Jerry “Didi” Jover, when I get drunk. The allegation is, of course, not true,” Adorio said in a four-page signed statement given during a press conference at Lion’s Park in Bacolod City yesterday.

When the tension appeared to have cooled down, he said, he again echoed his apologies.

Javi, however, responded that he still does not believe, adding that “I am giving you the benefit of the doubt.”

Sablan butted in that I should prove myself by tripling my efforts to campaign for Javi. I assured them that I will prove to them my loyalty, he added.

“I thought all was well after that discussion. When I was near the door, Javi crossed my way and blocked the exit. Then, on top of his voice, he ordered me to kneel before him.”

“Kneel” he repeatedly commanded in the dialect followed by another order, “Bisa” (kiss my hand).

He then asked someone to take photos of that episode, while kneeling and kissing the hand.

“I was at a loss totally and in a state of shock. I don’t know any more what was going on. I got cold feet and my head was like frozen for a long time. I was numb, empty and obviously in fear,” Adorio told reporters.

Adorio said he would have ended up being dumped in some remote sugarcane field in Victorias City had he defied the orders of Javi because he had many body guards milling around at the meeting place.

He added that he decided to come out in the open to make sure that what happened to him under Javi’s hands will not be experienced by other Victoriahanons especially the poor if he becomes mayor.

He said he suffered a great deal of depression after the March 28 incident and had been in constant contact with a lawyer for possible legal action.

He was also rushed to a doctor after his assistant saw him black and blue on his bed the day after the harrowing incident.

The Visayan DAILY STAR attempted to reach Javi Benitez or his representatives but were unable to get a reply as of press time.*

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