• Impeach me, Aquino dares Joker, Miriam

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     Members of the Kilusang Mambubukid ng Pilipinas hold a rally in front of the Ombudsman on Wednesday, where their leaders filed a plunder case against President Benigno Aquino 3rd, Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala, Budget Secretary Florencio Abad, and other government officials. PHOTO BY MIKE DE JUAN

    Members of the Kilusang Mambubukid ng Pilipinas hold a rally in front of the Ombudsman on Wednesday, where their leaders filed a plunder case against President Benigno Aquino 3rd, Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala, Budget Secretary Florencio Abad, and other government officials. PHOTO BY MIKE DE JUAN

    PRESIDENT Benigno Aquino 3rd on Wednesday dared his critics to file an impeachment complaint against him if they believe the controversial Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) fund releases that he authorized were illegal.

    Aquino particularly lashed out at former Senator Joker Arroyo and Sen. Miriam
    Defensor-Santiago, who considered the disbursements made through DAP, including the millions released to senators after the conviction of former chief justice Renato Corona, were “illegal” and “unconstitutional.”

    “Isulong nila kung sa palagay nila nasa tama pero kakabasa ko lang sa Constitution, merong authority sa savings to put to other uses basta nandun sa ating budget [They can pursue it if they are convinced what I did was wrong but I just read the Constitution and it says I have authority to direct savings to other uses as long as it is included in the budget],” he said.

    The two senators, who voted to acquit Corona, said the Aquino administration’s DAP was neither provided for under the General Appropriations Act or in any of the country’s laws.

    The President said it is within his powers to realign savings.

    His spokesman earlier cited Article 6, Section 25 paragraph 5 which states that “No law shall be passed authorizing any transfer of appropriations; however, the President, the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and the heads of Constitutional Commissions may, by law, be authorized to augment any item in the general appropriations law for their respective offices from savings in other items of their respective appropriations.”

    Not a bribe
    According to the President, the DAP funds were used for projects that Congress had already authorized.

    ”Since they are both senators, one would assume that they were either supportive of the budget or they were not successful in thwarting the budget,” he said.

    He argued that DAP was meant for the efficient departments whose projects should be finished in a short period of time.

    “So we found the funds for them,” Aquino added. The President insisted that the DAP funds given to lawmakers can never be considered as bribes for the conviction of Corona since those were released in October, months after the impeachment trial.

    “How can there be a bribe after the fact?” he pointed out.

    The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) earlier said millions of pesos from the DAP were released to lawmakers to ramp up government spending and help fire up the economy.

    Budget Secretary Florencio Abad said the DAP releases were sourced from the savings of the national government, which includes unprogrammed funds generated from windfall revenue collections, unreleased appropriations from slow-moving projects, and terminated programs.

    Plunder
    Ignoring the fact that the President is immune from suit, a peasant group filed a case of plunder and other graft-related complaints against Aquino and two senior Cabinet officials for their alleged failure to delist the bogus nongovernment organizations (NGO) that Janet Lim Napoles used to rake in hundreds of millions of pesos from the P10 billion Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF).

    Aside from the President, the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) also named as respondents Abad, Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala, Agriculture Undersecretary Antonio Fleta, Alcala’s executive assistant Arnulfo Mañalac, Salvador Salacup, Budget Undersecretary Mario Relampagos, Napoles, her brother John Lim and scam informant Merlina Suñas.

    In its complaint before the Office of the Ombudsman, the KMP said the Department of Agriculture accredited three foundations in 2013—Kabuhayan at Kalusugan Alay sa Masa Foundation Inc. (KKAMFI), Gabay at Pag-Asa ng Masa Foundation Inc.

    (GPMFI) and Kaupdanan Para sa mga Mangunguma Foundation Inc. (KPMFI)—even after the Commission on Audit (COA) discovered that they were being run by Napoles.

    Accredited NGOs get to be the implementing agencies of the PDAF-funded projects of lawmakers.

    Based on the COA Special Audit on PDAF spending from 2007 to 2009, at least P526.679 million was funneled to the KKAMFI, with the National Agribusiness Corp. (Nabcor), the Technology Resource Center, and the National Livelihood Development Corp. acting as implementing agencies.

    The COA audit showed that P108.15 million went to the GPMFI while the KPMFI obtained P83 million in pork barrel funds from the DA in 2012.

    In a statement, the KMP said that under the Doctrine of Qualified Political Agency, “The acts committed by the department secretaries under the Executive Department are deemed acts of the President. Moreover, since there was no reprobation or disapproval coming from President Aquino regarding their actions, it can be easily inferred that the President acquiesced to such acts.”

    The DA, through Fleta and Agawin, “accredited the NGOs with the approval of the Secretary Alcala. The fact that the transactions of the bogus NGOs have already started as early as 2007 should have been enough reason not to continue their accreditation,” it said.

    Yet the DA “did not lift a finger to delist and file criminal cases against the said NGOs.

    As such, it could be reasonably concluded that the respondents-officials of DA have conspired and benefited from the scam,” the group said.

    The complainants include KMP vice-chairperson and Alyansa ng mga Magbubukid sa Gitnang Luzon (AMGL) chairman Jose Canlas, Katipunan ng mga Samahang Magbubukid sa Timog Katagalugan (Kasama-TK) spokesman Nestor Villanueva, KMP secretary general Antonio Flores and his deputy secretary, Wilfredo Marbella.

    “Alcala and his gang’s schematic plunder of agricultural funds and their pig-headed refusal to resign are the biggest roadblocks to food security and self-sufficiency,” Flores said in a separate statement.

    He said the plunder charge against Aquino and his top cabinet officials is an “acid test” for the Ombudsman.

    “The Ombudsman has the power to investigate even a sitting President and the Filipino people have every right to know his participation in the pork barrel scam.

    Aquino cannot hide under the mantle of presidential immunity,” Flores said.

    Probe Aquino, DAP
    At the House of Representatives, Kabataan Rep. Terry Ridon on Wednesday filed a resolution urging the Committees on Appropriation and Good Government and Public Accountability to investigate Aquino.

    “We have repeatedly said in the past that discretionary funds that are under the sole control of the President are highly vulnerable to corruption and misuse. Now, we’re witnessing what such funds can do concretely—it can make or unmake even the highest officials of the land—just as what happened to former Chief Justice Corona,” Ridon said in a statement.

    Controversy shrouded DAP after Sen. Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada revealed in a privilege speech last week that several legislators received millions of pesos from the DAP as incentives for convicting Corona.

    “Though not all senators have admitted that DAP was used as a form of incentive for the successful impeachment of Corona, no one has denied receiving the said funds.

    Even Senate President Franklin Drilon himself said that he received P100 million,” Ridon said.

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    25 Comments

    1. nicetas dimaano on

      ang sa akin lng,maganda nman ang mga programa mo sa bansa natin mr president,kya lng wag mo ng balikbalikan ang nakaraan,ang arroyo govt,nakaraan na yon,ang maigi mr president,gampanan mong mabuti ang yong tungkulin ngayon at pag handaan mo pa ay kong ano pa ang yong magagawa para sa ikauunlad ng ating bansa sa hinaharap.

    2. nicetas dimaano on

      ang sa akin lng,ok ka nman pinoy maganda ang programa mo para sa bansa natin,,kya wag muna sa laging balikan ang arroyo gvt,nakaraan na yon,ang gampanan mo mr president ay ang ngayon,at pg handaan mo ay ang ikakauunlad pang bukas ng atin bansa,at ksama mo sambayanan sa tuwid na daan

    3. alam nyo nakakasawa na. Lahat kayo puro dada wala namang nangyayari, tulad na lang nitong joker na ito atty . matalino pero bakit sinasabi niya di nya alam na sa DAP pala kinuha ang pundo ng natanggap niya. Samantalang kahit ordinaryong tao malalaman kasi lahat yan may acceptance letter for sure pinirmahan nya. Now, ngayong malinaw na karamihan ng SENADOR,CONGRESISTA ay magnanakaw sa kaban ng bayan bakit di natin muna natin itulak na sila ay managot hindi ung wala pang natatapos may bago na namn. Tuloy tinatawanan lang tayo ng ibang bansa na nag aabang sa atin. Lahat ito diversionary tactics ng mga ulupong sa senado ( Sexy, Tanda at Pogi). kaya pilipinas magkaisa tayo pukpukin ang ombudsman na madaliin ang kanilang trabaho dahil lahat ng magagawa nilang palusot gagawin at gawin nilang lahat na mga magnanakaw. Gumising na tayo, lahat yan nakinabang kay napoles, isa na dyan ung mga pari na nakadikit sa kanya nung nanalasa pa. Ung nangyari sa mindanao malinaw na si enrile at binay ang may pakana kasi sila lang ang may access kay missuari. Markahan na natin ang mga epal na pulitiko na ito na mga magnanakaw. Mula sa angkan ng Estrada, Enrile at Binay lahat yan naghahangad na manatili at umangat sa trono. mahiya namn po kayo magresign na kayo para man lang sa bansang ito. Buti nga nakakatulog pa kayo.

    4. Guys.. calm down, understand, widen up more our thoughts and let us pray, the Executive is trustworthy, lets follow the investigation and start from there, but that force to initiate the removal of this PEOPLE will not help but, will worsen the Phil. Situation……………………………………

    5. Let Aquino govern. When will this stop. Aquino has 70% approval rating. Stop the unnecessary protests that will not go anywhere. Do something positive.

    6. boots Ladrillo on

      Lahat na lang na Presidente ng Pilipinas gusto natin tangaglin, kaya’t tayo hindi umaasenso tayo din mismo mga Pilipino hindi nagkakaisa.

      kawawang pilipinas mayaman sa likas na yaman pero mahirap ang bawat pilipino

      • kaya hindi umaasenso ang pilipinas dahil nga sa mga nagiging presedente, huwag mong isisi sa mahirap ang pag lubog ng pilipinas dahil ang mahirap ang nag sasalba sa pag lubog, lalong-lalo
        na ang mga mahirap na ofw…..

    7. Yabang naman in Benigno “SISI” Aquino as what Jojo Robles of standard today call him now. Kasi wala ng ginawa kundi manisi ng iba pag may butas na nasisilip sa kanila. Palibhasa, thru his pork or dap ( kaya nga natawag siyang Pork barrel king) eh hawak nya ang lehislatura. Nakikinig kasi sa mga nakapaligid sa kanya sa ngayon katulad nina dinky, abad, at ibp eh mga tuta rin ni gloria noong araw. Nauuto lang talaga ang preisdente nyo, buti na lang di k binoto.

    8. I trust Pnoy 101% in handling of financial affairs of the government. The people that must be removed from office are the likes of Enrile, Estrada, Revilla, Marcos, Legarda and some other congressmen. I pray that God enlighten the minds of these people and willingly quit office.

    9. OFW in Middleast on

      Aquino is very brave to dare former Senator Arroyo and Senator Santiago to impeach him because he knows that he has the power over the congress, senate and even supreme court.
      Bulok na systema…. ang tuwid na daan.. ito pala sinasabi na…. na daan… papuntang iperno…

    10. OFW in Middleast on

      Aquino’s straight path has no difference from the previous administration. Even his mother, cory corrupted also the money of the poor. No leader is trustworthy this time. Filipinos are hopeless and tired. We better leave the country. We cannot bare the pain…

    11. OFW in Middleast on

      Aquino should be investigated. He should be removed from office and imprisoned if found guilty of the said illegal act.

      • Thomas Alfaro on

        And put Jejomar Binay as President? Is that desert temperature affecting the way you think?….kabayan?

      • Thomas Alfaro on

        After you removed Pres. Aquino from power and replaced with Binay, do you have a guarantee that he will not be a worse President than Aquino? Given his history in politics, do you assume then that the Philippines will be better off with him as the chief executive? Sorry if you hear me laughing so hard in the background. :D

    12. What a humbug of a President! You know you cannot be impeached because you have most of the lawmakers in your pocket. The only way is for you to resign or through a peoples revolt. How can you deny that the Corona case was not a machination of your hatred? From the start to finish you have bribed congress to facilitate his conviction, the people know this. I wonder how you and your cohorts and those money hungry thick faced lawmakers can sleep straight at night. Mr President bad things are catching up with you, do the right thing if you still have an ounce of delicadeza in your body. Nakakahiya kang tawagin pangulo, inutil ka sinungalin at salbahe pa..

    13. virginia S. Guevara on

      As long as the Lawmakers can create a law with a loophole that they can break without being prosecuted our country and true Filipino citizens will never rise from poverty. Our people and our country are being used and manipulated by the so called “Lawmakers”. History repeat itself for decades and corruption will never end unless Someone can make a Radical Transparent Changes in the govt’s fundamentally crooked Laws for Good.

    14. Felix Servidad on

      Let’s wait! for now, until the quorum of legislators find ways to
      impeach Pnoy, when that times come, he will no longer say, hey come on
      Impeach me if you can!

    15. This is an acid test for PNoy. There is no doubt that he is sincere in reducing if not eradicating corruption in government and in actualizing his principle and goal that the people are his “boss”; too, in reducing abuse of power or prerogatives (no “wang-wang”). But corruption by way of taking advantage of political powers to advance the political agenda of his party is also a bad and TRAPO for that matter, a case of one bad deed cancelling one good deed…this is not enough to avert the country’s sufferings and alleviate the people’s poverty…good luck Mr. President…I hope you can defend your position and get cleared of any wrong doing..

    16. Impeach Me! Yes. A fitting challenge of an arrogant president who controls both houses of the Philippine legislature. This is an insult to the Filipino people because the president will not be impeached by his own allies. Now, who will stop him and his loyal DBM protégé Mr. Butch Abad, from plundering the nation’s coffers. When other politicians misused their PDAF, the president orders them investigated. Paradoxically, he who orders the investigation also misused and abused the public funds under his and his obedient DBM’s charge. The Filipino people have had enough. After being robbed of their money, the president is rubbing salt to their wounds.

    17. Romeo M. Menorca on

      PNOY today acts and sounds like the one we know many years back in our history. Because the one – we know – was a “strong man” (just like Pnoy – at least according to “reliable” surveys) he was so arrogant in his pronouncements and actions. At one time this strong man declared in reaction to his critics who believed he was sick of a serious disease….”I do not ntend to die”… and the REST IS HISTORY. It’s not exactly the same but the phrase “impeach me” and “i do not intend to die” are similar in terms of INSIGHT and PHILOSOPHICA thought.

    18. Isagani Lazaro on

      May those people who profess to know the law … provisions of the Constitution … please explain the difference between “… may be authorized to augment…” and “… has the authority to augment…”

      From the provision that was quoted by the spokesperson from Malacanang, it appears, to me, that if this person who occupies the position of President of the Republic wants or needs “to augment …,” he needs the authorization of … (in this case, I deduce “of Congress”). The provision does not say that “he has the authority ..”

    19. Seriously, these politicians who rides on the waves of the recent PDAF protest to score points for their self interest rings hollow to me, because the scam committed only covers during the last administration. I prefer for the president not to be distracted by the opposition’s tactic. Continue to run after these people who are corrupt and confiscate their ill gotten wealth, then put them all in jail if only to send a message to these scammers, past, present and future. PNOY, you are the answer to my prayer hoping that someday a strong president will take care of this corruption that is bleeding the country to remain mired in poverty. Mr. president, if you have not done it yet, please start selecting a strong presidential candidate who is beyond reproach, honest, scrupulous, God fearing/loving. with an affinity for the poor, preferably a nonpolitical person the likes of; Ms. C. Morales the ombudsman and Ms. Pulido Tan, the COA chief and among others. Remain strong Mr. president the majority of Filipinos are on your side, local and abroad. God bless.

    20. We cannot trust our leaders both the executive and legislative to handle our money. We cannot also expect them to make an honest investigation of all these scams in PDAF and DAP because they are involved. In fact they are busy justifying their decision to accept millions of pesos as bribe to impeach CJ Corona by telling lies. These leaders are not anymore worthy to keep their positions. Let us remove them if they don’t resign!