Detained former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo wishes her political enemies well.
Buhay party-list Rep. Lito Atienza, a former Cabinet member during the Arroyo administration, made the disclosure after his recent visit to the country’s former leader, who is under hospital arrest in Veterans Memorial Medical Center over a pending P366- million plunder charge.
“Somebody joked her that she will soon be joined by many other government officials who are also facing graft-related cases, but she told us not to joke about it. She said she doesn’t want anyone to suffer the same fate… that she hopes and prays that they won’t be in her place,” Atienza said in a news conference over the weekend.
“It was a statement from a Christian… a stateswoman, he added.
Other high-profile detainees who are incarcerated because of pending plunder charges are Senators Juan Ponce Enrile, Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada and Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr. in connection with their alleged diversion of their respective Priority Development Assistance Funds to fake organizations and their bank accounts.
Mrs. Arroyo, now a lawmaker represnting her native Pampanga, has been in hospital detention since October 2012.
Atienza, on the other hand, used to be then-President Arroyo’s Secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
House Resolution 1908, which is pending and principally authored by 1-BAP party-list Rep. Silvestre Bello, urges the Sandiganbayan to grant house arrest to Mrs. Arroyo for humanitarian considerations.
The decision, however, lies with the Sandiganbayan or the anti-graft court.
Of the seven accused in the P366-million state charity fund plunder case, only the former President and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) budget and accounts manager Benigno Aguas remain in detention.
The rest of their co-accused who were granted bail by the Sandiganbayan’s First Division are former Commission on Audit Chairman Reynaldo Villar, former PCSO Chairman Sergio Valencia and ex-PCSO Directors Manuel Morato, Raymundo Roquero and Jose Taruc 5th.