The lawmaker’s offer

Documentary evidence

Documentary evidence

One of the lawmakers implicated in the pork barrel scam operated by Janet Lim Napoles sent feelers to Malacañang about three weeks ago.

The offer: “I will return the money I got from my PDAF fund plus interest. I will make a public apology. I will resign and will not run for elective office again.”

The requested reward: “Please don’t file plunder charges against me.”

Reason for the offer: “One, I want to spare my grandchildren the stigma of having a grandparent convicted of plunder. Two, I am currently ‘down.’ This is not the best time of my life.”

My source declined to identify the lawmaker and the branch of legislature. I can only guess the identity based on the demands: he or she is old enough to have grandchildren and is eligible for election in 2016.

Last Monday, a total of 37 persons were charged in connection with the misuse of the Priority Development Assistance Fund. Three senators were charged with plunder: Ramon “Bong” Revilla; Jinggoy Estrada, and Juan Ponce Enrile.

Also charged with plunder were former Masbate Rep. now Gov. Rizalina Lanete and former APEC party-list Rep. Edgar Valdez.

According to the charge sheet, the five lawmakers “committed plunder in conspiracy with Napoles and officials of the implementing agencies when said lawmakers each accumulated more than P50 million through a series of transactions over time through misappropriation, conversion, misuse, and malversation of the cash value of the project cost allocated from the lawmakers’ PDAF and through their acceptance of kickbacks and commissions.”

Revilla and Estrada continue to profess their innocence. Estrada’s lame argument is that his endorsing a nongovernment organization, even if it turned out to be fake, as a recipient of his pork barrel did not constitute a crime.

He should be told that the endorsement may not be a crime but being a recipient of millions of money from PDAF is stealing money from the people. That’s plunder.

Enrile is in the hospital. At 89, he may escape imprisonment for humanitarian reasons even if convicted.

Legal experts say it would not be a short and easy case. But all those charged can kiss their political ambitions goodbye.

Three former members of the House of Representatives were also charged with malversation of public funds, direct bribery and violation of the Graft and Corrupt Practices Act for accumulating kickbacks and other benefits less than P50 million, said De Lima. They are former Agusan del Sur Rep. Rodolfo Plaza, former Benguet Rep. Samuel Dangwa and former Cagayan de Oro Rep. Constantino Jaraula.

Plaza, who has been reported to have left the country, about two weeks ago, is the same lawmaker who lamented “What kind of Congress is this” during the 2009 debate in Congress whether to play the “Hello Garci” tapes.

With the mindboggling reports of how he and fellow lawmakers diverted millions and millions of money intended for the marginalized to their pockets, Plaza can say it again: “What kind of Congress is this?”

September 19, 2013 8:24 pm  Tags: ,   Posted in: Graft and corruption

13 Responses

  1. Ellen - September 19, 2013 8:55 pm

    Testing comments

  2. chi - September 19, 2013 9:45 pm

    Testing comments din, kung wala na ang kapatid ni lulimon.

  3. chi - September 19, 2013 9:49 pm

    Parang alam ko na kung sino ang nag-offer.

    Bakit walang nasama (pa?) sa DBM? E hindi naman tatakbo ang proseso ng pork barrel scam kung walang go-signal ang departamento.

  4. TonGuE-tWisTeD - September 20, 2013 12:34 am

    Kawawa si Ompong Plaza. Di naman kasingswapang ng iba yan, mas maykaya pa nga yata si Edward, yung classmate ko, na mas batang kapatid na governor ngayon sa kanila.

    Ang malversation, although mababa sa plunder, pareho lang halos yan ng penalty, yun lang, hindi umabot ng P50M. Mas pino ang kurakot nito kesa yung nag-plunder. In fact, si Ompong pa nga mismo ang nagbulgar ng paglulustay ng pondo ng probinsya Agusan ng kapatid niyang si Eddiebong, kaya nung nakaraang eleksiyon, siya at yung isang kapatid na lalaki, kalaban ni Eddiebong at dalawa pang kapatid na babae.

    Pero magwawala ako, kung ako si Ompong kung yung tatlong senador lang at 5 congressman ang kakasuhan.

  5. TonGuE-tWisTeD - September 20, 2013 12:36 am

    Paano kaya kung buhay pa si Boncodin, magtuturo kaya siya hanggang sa level ni Putot? Sayang. Yung mga kaso ni Napoles halos base lahat ng ebidensya nung panahon ni Boncodin sa DBM.

  6. Ellen - September 20, 2013 1:23 am

    It’s very hard to believe that Boncodin was an accomplice. Was she too trusting of her subordinates? It’s still not an excuse. In the same way that Secretary Abad also has a lot of explaining to do because the anomalous practice continued under his term.

  7. juanbrown - September 20, 2013 8:48 am

    Maybe that lawmaker offeror believes in this saying: “To ERE (Enrile, Revilla, Estrada, et al) is human, to return the pork is divine.”

  8. Jake Las Pinas - September 21, 2013 9:59 am

    So the investigation is done? Only 3 senators? What about the rest of the senators who accepted pork? Where did they put the money? The investigation is focused only on JLN? The COA report is half baked. P120M x 6 years x 20 senators! I feel the investigation is suppressed.

  9. Ellen - September 21, 2013 3:52 pm

    I think, the DOJ is preparing more charges to be filed against another set of respondents.

  10. saxnviolins - September 21, 2013 8:28 pm

    The Malampaya Fund’s current balance stands at P130 billion, and President Benigno Aquino III spent only P15 billion from the fund in 2011 and 2012 “for energy-related projects including the purchase, refurbishment and transport of a US Coast Guard cutter,” Malacañang said Friday.

    The Palace justified the use of Malampaya funds for the ship renamed BRP Gregorio del Pilar as it will be used to secure our energy resources in the disputed West Philippine Sea (South China Sea).

    Akala ko ba TY. Binili pala. How much? May bidding ba?

  11. olan - September 22, 2013 3:46 am

    Malampalaya funds now about 130 billion… Plus huge tax inflow due to economic growth tapos for every citizen earning 500 thousand pesos a year 32 percent income tax…travel tax, vat at 12percent, tapos iba pang tax toll roads, registration, etc etc… And yet they can only show minimal help to tax paying public in terms of services like security, justice, clean environment…. Ngayon nag ka problema as Mindanao as Tao pa rin hingin ng tulong… Why not ask congress for a quick appropriation to help those 100000 of our kababayam funds to help them? People will help it just that when our government is campaigning for funds to help them parang nskskaloko pa sila… And yet puro courtesy as mga mag snake sa handy nila!!!! Bwiset !!

  12. olan - September 22, 2013 3:48 am

    Sorry… as mga magnanakaw as hanay nila..

  13. Mannie - September 22, 2013 3:58 am

    juanbrown – September 20, 2013 8:48 am

    Maybe that lawmaker offeror believes in this saying: “To ERE (Enrile, Revilla, Estrada, et al) is human, to return the pork is divine.”

    Reply: ERE should be ERR. It’s Enrile or Estrada then Revilla, Revilla. Revilla is twice because he’s the lawmaker being referred to. He has grand children and plans to run for higher office in 2016.

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