THE camp of Benhur Luy and the other witnesses in the pork barrel scam are sifting through voluminous documents that could be used as evidence to pin down Janet Lim-Napoles on the P407-million “ghost” computer project at the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) a decade ago.
Luy’s lawyer, Raji Mendoza, said they are scrutinizing each document related to the anomaly, which happened during the time of then-DOTC Secretary Leandro Mendoza.
“Napoles was a principal in the DOTC computer deal where she used Jo Chris Trading to supply the computers that never came,” Mendoza (no relation to the then-DOTC chief) told The Manila Times.
He said they will also submit soon Luy’s affidavit on the fertilizer fund scam where Napoles was also a principal accused.
“We’re doing both at the same time. We are now busy with the DOTC anomaly,” Mendoza said.
Earlier this month, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said she would have the questionable DOTC project investigated and that charges will be filed against those involved.
Mendoza said Jo Chris Trading cornered the P407-million contract for the distribution of computers and other communication equipment to local governments picked by lawmakers from 2002 to 2003.
The project, it was learned, was awarded to the company without the benefit of public bidding. Witnesses said not a single item was delivered, raising suspicion that the money was used only for election purposes.
Mendoza said the Commission on Audit (COA) dragged its feet in investigating the reported anomalies.
In the past, several lawmakers also took a swipe at COA auditors for their slow action on several complaints. For one, Cavite Rep. Elpidio Barzaga claimed that these anomalies would not have happened without the connivance of COA auditors.
“COA Chairman [Grace Pulido] Tan has been very vocal about the pork barrel scam yet no COA auditor has been mentioned in the pork barrel issue,” Barzaga said in a previous interview.
It was alleged that the DOTC and fertilizer fund scams were “test schemes” that led to the multibillion-peso priority development assistance fund scandal.