• Can President Aquino run after Enrile, et al?

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    Tony Lopez

    Tony Lopez

    The government is disintegrating. And I am not referring in particular to the administration of President BS Aquino 3rd. I am referring to our system of government, our so-called democratic system of government.

    Our system of government is anything but democratic. The poor and the middle class do not have access to it. Only the Philippines’ 80 elite families have access to it. They have had a monopoly of political power— and its economic dividends—in the last 80 years.

    This monopoly by the 80 elite political families has been incompetent, abusive, corrupt and disastrous. At the turn of the 19th century, the Philippines was

    Asia’s first republic and the most modern. Such cities as Manila, Cebu and Iloilo were the hubs of a global trading system.

    After World War II despite Manila being more devastated than Poland (thanks to the Americans), the Philippines was still the most prosperous country in Asia. That economic preeminence lasted until the mid-1960s.

    After that, the larceny and plunder unheard of in the history of this country took place. On a grand scale. The result: People are losing faith in their government.

    Poverty, along with crime and grime, stalks the land. By next year, if the current pork barrel scandal finally explodes, nobody would be willing to pay taxes. Everybody will challenge the Bureau of Internal Revenue why it is running after them while the much bigger crooks and tax evaders in Congress and in Malacanang are laughing all the way to their banks.

    In 2007 to 2009 alone, according to the Commission on Audit, P115.987 billion worth of pork barrel money was released by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM). Of that P6.8 billion went to 23 senators, P38.77 billion went to 334 congressmen, and P70.39 billion went to unnamed solons.

    Using the Janet Napoles formula of 70 percent for the solons, 30 percent for herself, and zero for the project, in her elaborate money laundering operation, P81.19 billion was stolen by the senators and the congressmen in three years or an average plunder of P27 billion a year.

    Add to that the personal pork of the President which in 2014 amounts to P449.95 billion, the so-called Special Purpose Funds of the Executive—P310.047 billion in programmed funds and P139.903 million in unprogrammed funds.

    No wonder President Aquino does not need to steal money. He already has P450 billion of discretionary funds, money he can spend anyway he wants, without anybody, including the Commission on Audit, complaining. By this time, much of the political capital and credibility that made Aquino immensely popular in the first three years of his presidency are gone. Thanks to the pork barrel scandal which he has mishandled.

    You thought Ferdinand Marcos was the biggest thief? No. Jovito Salonga estimated Marcos’s loot at $10 billion but offered no convincing evidence proof.

    Salonga was the first chairman of the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG). His job was to find and recover the so-called $10-billion ill-gotten wealth. But he lost the briefcase containing the damning documents in March 1986 inside a Korean restaurant in New York. The senator later claimed it was not his briefcase but his deputy Pedro Yap’s that was snatched.

    Top defense lawyer Gerry Spence would later win acquittal for Imelda Marcos in New York on Federal racketeering charges. Twenty years later, Imelda was inviting anybody interested to her Ayala Avenue Penthouse and showed him carton boxes of documents indicating the Marcos’s ownership of all—yes, all—major Philippine corporations. The claim was so incredible, nobody believed her.

    Today, there are bigger crooks. All Philippine presidents after Marcos were accused of corruption, incompetence or both. During the Marcos presidency, congressmen received only P100,000 a year in pork barrel or congressional allowances, equivalent in today’s pesos, to P5.8 million a year.

    In 1990, under President Corazon Aquino, pork barrel was institutionalized and given a fancy name—Community Development Fund. Under President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, pork barrel was hugely expanded and given an even fancier name, Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF). Each congressmen received P70 million while senators got P200 million each in PDAF a year. Those who were closed with the President or danced to his/her music got more.

    During 2007 to 2009, the Dirty Dozen senators in PDAF were: 1. Juan Ponce Enrile P904.5 billion, 2. Edgardo Angara P862.645 billion, 3. Ramon Revilla Jr P853 billion, 4. Jinggoy Estrada P825 billion, 5. Miriam Santiago P551.85 million, 6. Lito Lapid P366.7 million, 7. Alan Cayetano P351 million, 8. Greg Honasan P348 million, 9. Migz Zubiri P316.4 million, and 10. Richard Gordon P246.3 million, 11. Pong Biazon P245 million, and 12. Kiko Pangilinan P191 million.

    Among the Liberal Party stalwarts in the House, Neptali Gonzales received P395 million in 2007 to 2009.

    Of the Senate’s Pork Barrel Twelve, opposition senators Bong Revilla and Jinggoy have 2016 presidential or vice presidential ambitions. On the administration side, Alan Cayetano wants to run for either president or vice president. Angara’s son, Sonny Angara was No. 6 in the 2013 senatorial race and is a viable bet for at least LP vice president in 2016.

    Manong Johnny, meanwhile, is a survivor and a battle-scarred politician. He ousted Marcos in the first People Power and was linked to seven coup attempts against Corazon Aquino.

    Can BS Aquino destroy JPE or for that matter the likes of Bong Revilla or Jinggoy Estrada by filing plunder charges against them?

    Aquino cannot run after JPE, Jinggoy and Bong without they bringing the house, meaning the government, down.

    Conclusion: Aquino should forget about Janet Napoles. She is just a minor accessory in the scheme of plunder. The one the President should provide full security to is the COA chairman, Grace Pulido Tan. She has the documents and the money trail to prosecute and convict the guilty. That is if Aquino has the political will to do it.

    Bna.biznewsasia@gmail.com

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    24 Comments

    1. Philippine Justice has fallen on

      Splendid work Mr. Tony Lopez and in answer to your question…….can prez aquino run after enrile et al? NO! a weak and indecisive petty leader as aquino the turd….cannot (no brains) will not (no balls) could not (no power) catch any thieves much less a cold.

    2. how can he run after Enrile et al.. when he himself is deep into the pdaf mess. why do you think the COA did the 2007 to 2009 audit only, why not not include the years before that when aquino was then a congressman. Another question that needs to be answered is why is Congressman aquinos record of pdaf is not available. Try auditing cayetano and trillanes pdaf too am sure you will find something stinky too.

    3. Elmer Martinez on

      I want to believe you, but the initial showing of the President do not bode well for what the people are expecting.

    4. if that happens, e baka bumaligtad yung pagka convict ni Corona…remember the amount of money used to get that conviction…tutal sabi nga ni Pnoy eh damay damay na…e sigurado yan din sasabihin nina enrile et.al..

    5. What Tony Lopez said in his column is all true. The Philippine government is deteriorating. But if Pnoy has the political will he can still save the country from utter devastation. As of the moment several senators are linked to the scam led by the senator who published a book of lies, crafter of martial rule and the greatest thief of all senator ENRILE. Together with his senator minions, they have methodically robbed the country’s wealth (the people’s money) by siphoning off our wealth to their own pockets.Unless and until our President can put the looting lawmakers in jail, then and only then can I say that here we have a president who thinks of the welfare of the Filipinos and his country.

      • Our culture so damaged it is now our norm. No matter who heads this nation it will be the same because the Filipino people themselves has evolved to be this corrupt. You reap what you sow. This is not the system that the President created but a long process of corrupted thoughts and practices year in and year out that Filipinos had helped to institutionalized in the corridors of power. Janet Napoles is your poster girl of Filipino corruption a reflection of the Filipino psyche. Let’s stop bashing or blaming or finger pointing…Let us all repent go back to God and have our national healing….Only God can heal our inequities. Can Pnoy go after the corrupt officials and locked them out forever??? Maybe yes but definitely it will not end there, the same personalities will come out unless the entire nation changes the way they think live and look at themselves and to the politicians. Will Filipinos finally treat themselves with descency and self respect and learn to value their nation and finally turn to God and live according to His will. We are a Christian nation. We must live like true Christians and stop making hell for others with naked greed!!!!

    6. Filipinos abroad are all watching the development in the Philippines with pride, over 7.5 rise in GNP. We saw the high rise bldgs., investments risings with Pres Aquino at the helm who can beat that? Now there is dark clouds rising that may erase all the gains made why? Because the Filipinos moral fiber is so friable, the Church itself needs salvation. We have raised generations of corrupt people that elects corrupt politicians,
      Just imagine we let The kind of Enriles, Estradas to hang around so long inspite of their sins, now the new breed of scums like the Revillas, Cayetanos are risings even Aquino himself may be dirty as hell. What do you expect from Landrones Island? We even pretend to praise the poor taxi driver who return monies left in the taxi, or airport jani returning bundle of money, they are but simple tanga who lost a very rare chance of easy money, while our big time politicians have to sacrifice to go to school themselves in the finest Catholic schools, that turned them into seasoned scums.
      Very morbid assessment and we need a Messiah to save Philippines, OFWs can’t
      Save the country alone with their 25 B $ remittance, Mahiya naman kayo sa maids
      Na pinapatulan pa in Villafuerte.

    7. Stand down the whole government of elected officials now, rather than allowing it to self-destruct and sink the whole nation with it. Declare all elective positions vacant and let us begin again with a simple snap election within the next 60 days.

    8. Thanks a lot for a very good comment. Why Pnoy can’t do anything to these culprits? Why marcos families are still free thieves and gov’t. officials. Is our Prez only good to stop Wang Wang? Well, PNOY must be Wang Wangin- remove from power and be replaced by Sen Escuder or a honest corrupt free senator and NOT a senaTONG.

    9. The people alone, not any Pres, could plush Enrile et al. down the drain. But, don’t get me wrong, for I go for the “water flowing its way to the sea” format.

    10. Hi Mr. Lopez,
      I would like to comment in your article ” Can BS Aquino run after Enrile, et al?
      In my own opinion, I strongly convinced that our President will not hesitate to file
      the appropriate charges against those who are involved in the PDAF scam. We have seen in the past that BS Aguino was consistent in pursuing corruption cases. As President and with one term only, this is the most very important opportunity for him to save or protect our country from the plunderers. If he fails, then our only last remaining options or hope is to call our kababayan to go out and bring their own available weapons in order to bring justice to all.

      Alfred

      • Sana tama ka.Pag walang ginawa si pinoy di alisin natin di ba yan ang tama. After sept. 11 rally sa sepr 21, naman pag wala pang ginawa si pinoy.

      • Elmer Martinez on

        Sabi nga natin nadalas; ABANGAN ANG SUSUNOD NA KABANATA. I am giving P-Noy the benefit of the doubt although for the first time in his governance as President, i have my biggest DOUBT this time.

    11. Jun Villacorta on

      We treat Napoles with velvet gloves and the whistle blowers are hardly protected or treated with kindness…..That’s what we are…rewarding the crooks

    12. I think you under estimate the political will of our President and the strength of his Boss, the Filipino People. His Boss want to see those corrupt public officials be punished. The President will do it and his Boss will back him all the way. If the President can make those Crooks accountable of their actions, Philippine Democracy will be more stronger…….. They can’t fool the Filipino people anymore!

      • You make an excellent point! Tony who has a sharp mind is burdened by the disappointments of mine and his generation. We are the baby boomers! Pnoy is the karma of Ninoy! He still has a few more years to accomplish that task resoundingly!

    13. well, it’s not pinoy who will bring these shameless senators down. it’s their bosses, we the people.

    14. I firmly believed that this present government is as dirty as its predecessor. Those trillions in national budget all these three years is a clear evidence of such malice. Have we ever wonder how come with such gigantic budget, nothing can be seen as a result of such amount. No jobs, and no economic activities. what was very clear from the start was the continued demonizing of the past president. That was all and if something goes wrong at present like a blitz the blame was on her. What a waste of money, time and chances our country had for these past 3 years. I’m so sorry for my country and my countrymen. WE don’t deserve this kind of dishonest corrupt officials. I don’t like to think that we are abandoned by God.

    15. JPE is a crook and power hungry politician. After Marcos nurtured him for decades, he stabbed Marcos with the egging of the Americans that they will install him as president. That is why he was insisting that it was a coalition with Cory after the coup. But Cory said no & he got fired. Don’t believe him that he overthrew Marcos for good governance. He, jinggoy & revilla investigate small fry crooks but these 3 idiots are bigger crooks than anyone else. Of course you can’t call them idiots, they’re smart kleptocrats.

    16. Sorry folks, PNoy will never touch Enrile. Enrile knows too much about the corruption of this government that if Pnoy will touch him, hell will break lose in government. Fact is, nobody can touch a super balimbing as Enrile, he is just too battle scarred that if he chose to, he can bring PNoy down with him.

      • Yes, I believe PNoy can and should run after Enrile, Estrada, and all those who have been named as principal players in the PDAF scam! To do otherwise, PNoy will only validate the common notion that he is also part of the scandal, he having enjoyed the use of the people’s money for his own personal benefit!
        What PNoy should do is to give support to our judiciary and let them prosecute and jail who are responsible and, lastly, to run after these people’s illegal wealth, forfeit and bring them back to the national treasury for use and enjoyment of all Filipinos!
        The people have become wise and vigilant now, and they would not be fooled anymore!!

    17. Only political will to do the impossible thing that are brave only dare. NINOY walk an extra mile to bring down Marcos regime. Here in these course 99 million Filipinos are riding on your back. You’re father was alone all of the people during 1983, are silent afraid because of Marcos totallitarian regime. But now it’s different around you have the support of the people trust and the military. Who are also tired of corruption inside AFP, Upper and Lower Houses of Chamber. And all other Gov’t institution who are embracing corruption as normal daily things. PNOY you got Napoles who can spill the beans why your afraid to trade jacks. If she can collaborate then can return all the money she took its about time to jail the criminal lawmaker. No matter how big or small anything anomalous transaction is a crime with bad intention. Without big names put behind bars they will laugh to these Aquino Government who wishes remain silent, when he ca do so. Maximize all the resources of Government to catch all corruptors.