The Makabayan bloc is readying criminal charges against former President Benigno Aquino 3rd in connection with the outlawed Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) and the Mamasapano tragedy.
Rep. Antonio Tinio of Alliance of Concerned Teachers party-list, one of the groups under Makabayan, noted that the former Chief Executive’s role in the two cases is undeniable.
The DAP, declared illegal by the Supreme Court in February 2015, is a spending program that allowed agencies under the Executive branch to declare their unspent appropriations as savings anytime and subsequently realign the funding to the administration’s priority projects, including those proposed by the lawmakers.
On the other hand, 44 members of the Special Action Force of the Philippine National Police (PNP) were killed by members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and other rebel groups in an operation dubbed Oplan Exodus that targeted high-profile terrorist target Zulkifli bin Hir alias Marwan.
Aquino was bitterly criticized for allowing suspended PNP chief Alan Purisima to be involved in the operation.
“Progressive organizations are preparing cases against former President Aquino. We have no specific date yet, but it’s certainly [a]proper [action]. The former highest official of the land must be held to the highest standard of accountability,” Tinio said in a text message to The Manila Times.
The former President lost his Presidential immunity from suit when he stepped down from office on June 30.
“We’re looking at violations of the Revised Penal Code and the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, among others,” Tinio said.
“A President who violated the Constitution and laws of the land should not be allowed to walk away scot free when Presidential immunity from suit no longer applies,” he added.
Makabayan is composed of party-list groups Bayan Muna, Gabriela, Alliance of Concerned Teaches, Kabataan and Anakpawis party-list.