• Bishops commend Tuason

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    The country needs more people like Ruby Tuason. So said Roman Catholic bishops on Friday as they commended Tuason’s sincerity after she appeared before the Senate Blue Ribbon committee investigating the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) scam on Thursday.

    Meanwhile, Sen. Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada was advised to resign or at least take a leave of absence following the “very” convincing testimony of Tuason, an anti-corruption advocacy group said.

    Caloocan Bishop Deogracias Iñiguez, who was able to hear only portions of the hearing, said he hopes that Tuason’s appearance on the Senate investigation will help resolve the PDAF scam.

    He added that Tuason appeared to be sincere in her testimonies compared to other whistle-blowers.

    “We hope she is the channel of uncovering this corruption and remedying it,” Iñiguez said.

    Before the members of the Blue Ribbon panel, Tuason admitted that she delivered Estrada’s pork barrel commissions four times.

    She claimed two of the cash deliveries were made in the Senate and that she had to use a trolley at one time because the bag containing the money “was big.”

    Citing corruption in the government, Cubao Bishop Honesto Ongtioco said that the Filipino people need more people like Tuason who appeared to be sincere in her testimonies.

    “God bless her for her testimonies,” Ongtioco said.

    Further, retired Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Oscar Cruz said that he believes “more on the testimony of Tuason than Benhur Luy.”

    Cruz explained that Tuason has “personally done” what she revealed on the senate investigation while Luy was more on “documentations.”

    “The testimony of Tuason is more loaded [and]concrete,” Cruz said.

    Cruz added that he is still waiting for someone to come out “revealing more anomalies” on the pork barrel of the lawmakers.

    He, however, asked why political allies of the Aquino administration were excluded from the scandal. “Only three people [Senators Estrada, Juan Ponce Enrile and Ramon ‘Bong’ Revilla] are being denounced here. This is some kind of enigma,” he said.

    On the other hand, Cruz urged Tuason to return the kickbacks she received from the senators’ pork barrel.

    “Everybody in this case [PDAF scam] must return [the money]that belongs to the government,” Jaro Archbishop Angel Lagdameo said.

    Estrada told to quit
    Dante Jimenez, founding chair of the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) said if Estrada really wants to preserve the remaining integrity of the Senate, he should make the ultimate sacrifice and resign.

    According to Jimenez, the testimony of Tuason on Thursday clearly put him in the middle of the PDAF controversy along with its alleged mastermind, businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles.

    “Now that there is a witness that personally handed the pork barrel kickbacks to Estrada, the only thing left for the senator is to resign and save the Senate from further damage,” Jimenez said.

    The VACC chair also pointed out that there is basis to suspect Estrada of being involved in what is considered to be the biggest scandal involving public funds in history, because it is not the first time that he was caught in such a mess.

    He said the senator along with his father former president and now Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada were both accused of plunder in 2001 but only the older Estrada was found guilty.

    Jimenez said that although Sen. Estrada was acquitted, his recent involvement in the multi-billion-peso PDAF controversy indicates a growing reputation of being a involved in corruption.

    “The least he could do is to take a leave of absence and allow the Senate to recover from the damage it sustained from the pork barrel controversy,” he added.

    Estrada rejected the calls and maintained that he sees no reason for him to do so since he has done nothing wrong.

    ‘It’s my job’
    In a related development, Senate Blue Ribbon panel chair Teofisto Guingona 3rd dismissed Estrada’s claims that he is taking advantage of the senate PDAF hearing in order to gain political advantage at the expense of his colleagues.

    Guingona insisted that his handling of the PDAF scam hearing Thursday is part of his job as head of the committee and he must ferret out the truth in the controversy.

    “My job is to investigate, do they want me to just close, my eyes, my mouth and pretend that nothing happened?” Guingona said in a radio interview.

    He was reacting to Estrada’s criticisms over his supposed “unfair” handling of the hearing that seemed to give more weight on Tuason’s testimony.

    “I consider that handling of the hearing as an offensive foul because he gave more weight on testimony of Mrs. Tuason despite the absence of basis and evidence aside from her own words,” Estrada said in prepared statement.

    Estrada also expressed suspicion that Guingona is using the hearing in order for him to improve his popularity and his ranking in the Senatorial race wherein he landed on the 12th position during the 2010 senatorial race.

    “I also cannot blame him (Guingona) because he might want to improve ratings in the elections. Maybe from number 12 he wants to be in number 11,” Estrada said.

    Guingona maintained that there is no politics involved in the hearing and suspects that he might have angered Estrada because the Blue Ribbon was able to bring out the truth.

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    13 Comments

    1. kitang kita naman totoo yung sinasabi ni ruby pagmasdan nyo kung paan o sya mag salita nung una medyo me sabit parang kabado pero nung tumagal na makikita mong totoo yung sinasabi. tyak me involved sa pol, allies ni noy no, 1 dyan si drillon n loren sana patas ang labanan. si jinggoy talagang kapit tuko yan parang si erap nun ayaw umalis sa malacanyang/

    2. This year the Philippines will be number one on the list of most corrupt countries at the far east.

    3. If i were the senator involved in such a sin against the filipino people specially the poor i should have resign..sa ibang bansa mga nag reresign na sila,,sa japan nag papakamatay pa sila pg nasangkot sa ganitong malaking kasalanan sa bansa..pero ikw kapal ng mokha mo..tomatawag ka pa ng media pra mag sinongaling..marami ng tao ang nag dadawit sau smilee ka pa..

      sana baguhin na ang ating batas about qualified voters, kc most of voters are like the mangmang senators..di alam kong ano ang ginagawa..

    4. why Estrada always defending himself in his wrongdoings…he is not anymore inncocent in the issue he is precisely involved and he has nothing to hide to the people because of what Tuazon revelation was true and correct based on her personal activity done by delivering bags of money from PDAF to him (Estrada)…Guingona is driving in right way for the truth and quarantine the life of the senate, just continue your good investigation to this expose what is real and people will defend you being the head of the committee…..

    5. ATTENTION OMBUDSMAN / SEC. L DELIMA:
      Another way of prosecuting corrupt officials is to investigate their unexplained wealth or net worth from the time they started public service to now. All their accumulated assets at present must be substantiated with their income capacity through-out their public service – any positive discrepancies would constitute unexplained wealth or corruption / plunder on their part.
      Many public officials in the past and present were convicted due to unexplained wealth.

    6. Everyone is entitled to his opinion. But the way Ms. Ruby Tuason showing in the senate blue hearing is not more convincing to become a state witness, all she said is only a second hand information, maybe she come out to save herself in the corruption activities she was involved in so many years. She doesn’t simple answer the simple question Trillaness asked. The best state witness is Napoles herself because she knew everyone involved in this scam. simply the money came from her and she is the one dealing it directly… but Ms Ruby sorry you must also pay the price you did..if the senators will goes to jail because of this corruption you must also go to jail as simple as that.

    7. Ang babaw naman naman ng dahilan kung bakit nagsalita si Guingona, from no.12 gustong maging no.11, Kaya walang respeto ang mga tao sa senado dahil maraming senador ang may pagka bobo pagdating sa katwiran. Isa pa makakapal ang mukha, hanga ako kay Zubiri na nagresign , siya ang taong may prinsipyo di tulad ng ibang mga senadores ngayon buking na kapit tuko pa sa position.Siguro naman kahit wala na sila sa senado ay mayaman pa din sila sa dami ng kanilang naibulsa kaya mabubuhay pa naman sila ng sagana, iyon nga lang wala na silang dangal sabagay hindi naman mahalaga sa kanila iyon, dahil kung mahalaga sa kanila ito ay hindi sila magiging kurakot.

    8. so what is it taking so much time to convict these crooks when there is already an overwhelming proofs? is this another drama/ soft opera by the politicians? Just convict and jail them then confiscate all their ill gotten wealth and distribute it to the people and infrastructures and basic services. Where is the one million march?

    9. Madugong rebolusyon kontra korapsyon ang dapat mangyari sa pilipinas upang ang mga magnanakaw sa gobyerno ay tuluyang mawala upang sa ganon ang pilipinas ay tuluyan ng umunlad, Hindi titigil ang mga gawaing ganyang hanggat walang napaparusahan at nabibitay

    10. The people involve in this PDAF scam has temerity to lie to the death. In the Philippines, politics is power. Power corrupts!

    11. Rosauro Feliciano on

      Documentation is an objective evidence where signatures of people are affixed. Mr. Luy in my opinion is also a credible whistle blower as Mrs. Tuason is. Has not because of Luy this corruption scandal would not prosper up to this point in time. Luy is instrumental in exposing this culture of corruption in the Senate pure and simple.

      • Tama ka Rosauro, na sa akin lang pareho sila, Ben Hur Luy at Ruby Tuazon , credible WITNESS. Ang walang credibilidad at di ko alam kung saan nya hinihugot ang lakas ng loob mag sinungaling ay si Sexy at ngayon ay ” Dinial King” na si Jungoy. Dapat nyang sagutin na kung walang palaman na MILLIONES ANG SANDWHCIH dala ni Ruby Tuazon ay bakit pa nya pinasusundo sa PERSONAL SECURITY AT DRIVER nya sa basement parking na Senatongs lang ang dapat gumamit? Pwede naman si Ruby Tuazon dumaan sa lahat ng dinadaanan ng mga bisita ng Senado, di ba Jinggoy? Bakit pa nilagay ni Ruby Tuazon yuon SANDWHICH SA TROLLEY KUNDI MERON ITONG PALAMAN NA MILLIONES AT MABIGAT BUHATIN NG BABAE KAYA NYA PINASUSUNDO NI JINGGOY SA BASEMENT PARKINGPARA HINDI HALUNGKATIN NG SECURITY NG SENADO, DI BA JINGGOY?