• Is Aquino corrupt?


    “But he himself is not corrupt, right?”

    That is a common refrain in conversations with Filipinos concerned about rising sleaze under President Benigno Aquino 3rd. Ironically, the same thing was once said about Ferdinand Marcos, a frugal Ilocano unlike his extravagant wife Imelda.

    After five years of Tuwid na Daan, many are disturbed, if not enraged that smuggling tripled from $7.9 billion in 2009 to nearly $27 billion last year, based on International Monetary Fund data.

    Pork barrel more than doubled to over P20 billion annually, while anomalies in commuter trains, license plates, combat planes and choppers, and even office supplies are the biggest ever. And Aquino’s P157-billion Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) is the largest malversation in Philippine history.

    Yet many Filipinos continue to give him the benefit of ever escalating doubt, believing or hoping he is personally honest. This despite Aquino’s constant defense of tainted allies and associates, his failure to probe mammoth scandals, and his refusal to push for the Freedom of Information bill, as he promised voters.

    So on Year 6 of his presidency, let us sincerely ponder the question based on plain facts: Is Aquino corrupt? Not just his allies, appointees, aides, and other associates close to him, including family members and the favored clique of schoolmates, partymates, and shooting buddies (KKK by their Filipino initials) — but Aquino himself.

    It’s in the bagman
    Many instantly insist on the President’s integrity because he has never been known or shown to have personally solicited or accepted an inappropriate advantage.

    Well, if that is enough to declare politicians clean, so many grafters would be exonerated simply by using bagmen to solicit, negotiate, and accept bribes. Indeed, only one Philippine president has been proven to have personally taken payoffs.

    In his plunder trial, Joseph Ejercito Estrada was shown to have received illicit funds. Documents and testimony established that he was the true accountholder of the Jose Velarde false-name deposit in Equitable Bank, which once held billions of pesos, including P189 million in checks representing commissions on shares bought by state financial institutions at Estrada’s behest.

    No other presidents were undeniably linked to payoffs. Hence, in pondering whether Aquino is corrupt, the apparent absence of actual money or other assets illicitly falling into his hands, pockets, accounts, or other personal receptacles is no reason to conclude he is clean. Otherwise, so many others would be deemed honest, even those currently accused of high corruption by the administration.

    Before leaving this issue, one might cite an instance when Aquino may have received an unlawful gift. In December 2011 he claimed to have bought with P4.5 million of his own money a “third-hand” Porsche 911 Turbo sportscar. Seven months later, he said he sold it for the same amount.

    Fellow columnist Rigoberto Tiglao, among other journalists, repeatedly pressed the Palace for car registrations and deeds of sale showing that the Porsche was really purchased then sold, and never gifted. No documents were presented. So many rightly concluded that the purported purchase never happened. But Aquino did get the luxury coupe, so it must have been a gift — and, given its high price, it violates the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.

    Where there’s smoke…
    The undocumented Porsche was but one of so many whiffs of Aquino smoke which got many looking for fire. In his first year alone, consider these dubous acts and omissions.

    Aquino declined to put the Philippine National Police, the main weapon against jueteng, under anti-gambling nemesis Jesse Robredo. Instead of the DILG Secretary, Aquino himself supervised the PNP through his shooting buddy, then Interior Undersecretary Rico Puno — whom anti-vice crusader Archbishop Oscar Cruz named along with then PNP Chief Jesus Versoza as “ultimate recipients” of jueteng payoffs.

    Aquino also kept smuggling — an even bigger source of multi-billion-peso payoffs — away from another proven sleaze fighter, former Customs Commissioner Guillermo Parayno, hired by the IMF as consultant in customs reform for his Ramos-era achievements.

    What’s worse, Aquino never probed the country’s biggest surge of contraband ever — the 2011 disappearance of more than 2,000 cargo containers — even if records show who kept releasing untaxed, uninspected boxes, though hundreds already vanished.

    Congress bribery and DAP malversation came in later years, along with anomalies in transport, defense, agriculture, and police agencies. Yet like townsfolk gawking at the Emperor’s new clothes in the children’s fable, huge segments of public and media, including opponents of graft in past regimes, still think Aquino is honest.

    His admirers and apologists should ask themselves if his acts would not demonstrate sleaze if done by other presidents. For instance, would they think Fidel Ramos is clean if he did not back Parayno’s cleanup against political pressure, but replaced him as Aquino did to reform-minded Customs chief John Sevilla?

    Would Gloria Arroyo be cheered if she kept expressing trust in Secretaries Hernando Perez of Justice, Angelo Reyes at National Defense, and Arthur Yap of Agriculture — as Aquino does with his Cabinet — instead of letting the three go amid sleaze allegations?

    And what if Arroyo did not scrap the P15-billion ZTE deal, but defended it like the P157-billion DAP? Or if she stalled the transparency-enhancing Procurement Reform Act of 2003, as Aquino has done with the FOI Bill?

    Would it have been fine for Estrada to treble pork barrel and shower it on legislators ousting the Chief Justice, instead of restricting the fund early in his term?

    If such excesses would make other leaders corrupt in our eyes, why not Aquino? Do we need a bagman like Chavit Singson to spill the beans about presidential payolas, before we finally see the fire amid Aquino’s huffing and puffing?

    Yet even smoking pistols may fail to convince segments of the public and the press. As the Filipino adage goes, it’s hard to wake someone pretending to sleep. Nor would lapdogs spurn or bite the hand that feeds them. And often, we keep believing in a false idol, rather than admit he has made fools of us.


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    1. Ilang beses ng nasaksihan ng taong bayan at buong mundo ang mga kasinungalingan ni aquino at hindi ko na kailangang isa-isahin pa dahil alam nyo kung ano ang mga kasinungalingan nya. Ganyan bang uri ng pangulo ang tatawagin mong honest? eh kung si cudia nga ng PMA pinatalsik at hindi pinagraduate dahil sa napakababaw na pagsisinungaling di umano eh bakit kapag kay aquino parang wala lang? Karamihan sa mga pilipino kase ay hypocrite na minions ni aquino. Mga mang-mang na taga sunod.

    2. Kailan pa naging honest ang saksakan sa kasinungalingan at kahambugan? Bakit pagdating kay aquino sobrang magbigay ng benefit of the doubt ang ibang mga tao pero sa ibang personalidad naman ni walang maipakitang ibedensya eh guilty na? Ganito ba ka bobo at kapanatiko sa mga aquino ang karamihang mga Pilipino? Kitang-kita na ang kurapsyon at napatunayan na ng korte na labag sa konstitusyon ang ginawa binibigyan pa din ng benefit of the doubt? Mang-mang ang karamihang mga Pilipino kung ganito.

    3. Norodin Lucman on

      Whatever Pres. Aquino reaps from his misguided adventures in Zamboanga City and Mamasapano with Mar Roxas would only be the sum of what he and his minions sowed in their more than five years in office. Bangsamoro Basic Law and DAP are his flagship Waterloos, among many blunders. His legacy dwarfs his mental issues, the apex of what is wrong in our political system.

    4. The system corrupts him and he corrupts the system..!!He wanted the Filipino to believed that he is different, that he is a reformer but his actions define him, his entire administration is more worse than any of his predecessors..

    5. Try as you will to cast false claims on this President but his ratings continue to be higher than recent leaders before him, especially GMA the crook. People can read through your agenda and so no one really listens.

      • Yet even smoking pistols may fail to convince segments of the public and the press. As the Filipino adage goes, it’s hard to wake someone pretending to sleep. Nor would lapdogs spurn or bite the hand that feeds them. And often, we keep believing in a false idol, rather than admit he has made fools of us.

    6. “There are no tyrants where there are no dlaves .. “The fault dear Btutus is not in our stars but in ourselves that we are underlings ”
      We have organizations that work only for the it advantage snd not the common man … MBC. PCCI Chinese Chamber.. Bankers Club ..MAP…

    7. It is not really a question if he is or not. Pnoy’s way of governance is his democratic style of corruption. Initially he started to be honest and incorruptible but it wane very quickly when he saw the writings on the wall. You can judged with the company you keep and treasure.

    8. How possible is it that Boy Sayad does not know that somebody in the Palace receives the quota from customs and the take from jueteng? Pugad ng sumbongero at intrigahan ang palasyo kaya imposible na hindi niya alam. Besides, if he is not responsible for all the corruption around him, what is he responsible for then?

    9. Di siya siguro indirectly corrupt however pag pinagtatakpan mo at pinagtatanggol ang mga taong puro kapalpakan ang ginawa sa termino mo eh sabit na din siya sa bilang ng mga CORRUPT.

    10. I don’t think PNOY is corrupt. Sorry to disappoint you. This has been the feedback from business, international media, transparency international and foreigners I have dealt with. There are however, corruptions taking place in many governments, private sector and all walks of life including the media.
      I guess the question should be, is our country less corrupt?. Here is the TRUTH.

      The Philippines is perceived to be becoming less corrupt over the past 3 years as it continues to improve its ranking in a global corruption survey.

      The Philippines ranked 85th out of 175 countries in Germany-based watchdog Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) for 2014, up from 94 in 2013, and 105 in 2012.

      Although the Philippines still scored below 50 in the index, its CPI score of 38 for 2014 is a “marked improvement” from how it fared in 2012 at 34, and 36 in 2013, Transparency International said.

      • their perceptions is distant away from reality on the ground. the writer had shown real and hard figures here, i guess. as common folk i can tell..

      • Survey is just that “Survey”. It does not show the in-depth detail of Pnoy’s governing ways and the friends and relatives he is protecting.

    11. As explained by the lawyer above, there is no doubt that it can be easily proven that the Abnoy is a principal by indirect participation so he can be criminally charged for corruption easily. Now, the penalty for crimes committed as a principal by indispensable cooperation could be no less than the penalty of RECLUSION PERPETUA for each case with all the accessory penalties provided for by law and to pay the costs.

      There is really no doubt the Abnoy will see jail after his term.

    12. in my mind boy sisi is corrupt as can be nino bonito. corruption is not just stealing tax money himself but also allowing his cronies to steal and he not doing anything about it and even defend these cronies to the death. corruption is paying off the crooks called honorable cong and sen in having your way – impeachment of corona and passage of rh bill- and lately having congress re-define the generally accepted definition of savings so he can usurp the power of the purse which is the domain of congress.

    13. For a very long time, the Filipino people have been fooled by the Aquinos. This family is not what we thought they are. Filipinos….wake up!!!

    14. Finally, an article that shows the truth about corruption in this government. Aquino is definitely the most corrupt president the Philippines has ever known..truth is already out but let’s wait for 2016 for the confirmation unless we are cheated again and Mar Roxas succeed him.

    15. yes, pnoy is corrupt. for me, one who corrupts others even with a noble purpose, is also corrupt…

    16. THESE AQUINOS ARE THE VERY SCOURGE of this impoverished, third world nation, mismanaged with utter incompetence by a Simeon the 3rd Benigno, a 3rd grade rate Ateneo grad – a first rate elitist, hacendero, with a true blue Makapili(WW2 Japanese collaborator grandfather) pedigree….

    17. By all indications and pure intent, HE IS. This Noynoy is a wreckless, lawless, above the law.

      This retard Noynoy makes sure he erases his fingerprints from all forms of Corruption with his governance, but the DNA does NOT LIE. Moron! Your DNA will incriminate your a$$…

    18. The Filipino people’s view of the Aquinos as honest, icons of democracy is the result of the press and the Catholic hierarchy’s built up of them as such. But in truth, the Aquino’s leave the Philippines a legacy of incompetence, clueless leadership, chaotic government. Benigno Aquino helped organized the Communist party that created the NPA. This terrorist group was unleashed by Cory to terrorized the Ilocos region when she assumed the position of President . At the same time she released from prison the Communist party leader, Jose Maria Sison, who is currently in political asylum in the Netherlands. Cory also changed the constitution to accommodate the oligarchs and the foreign investors that have taken over the economic resources of the country. Did you notice that all major business establishments, shopping malls, public utilities, banks, universities, hospitals are now owned by chinese, or koreans. or Japanese, or Indonesians, leaving only the Filipinos as their domestic helpers. Ironically, the current President, BS Aquino does not even believe he is under the Constitution. Last year, his DAP (pork barrel fund)
      was declared unconstitutional. Yet in the current budget, he had set aside P150 billion in DAP, in complete disregard of the Supreme Court Decision. Interestingly, the people did not hear any expression of outrage from the press, who created the monster idea of the incorruptible image of the Aquinos. That is why the Filipino people are ignoring the complete chaotic mess of a government the country for so long a time. And that is why the Philippines is what is today, the dump site of the orient seas, not pearl of the orient seas.

      Cardinal Sin led the revolt of the people power that got rid of Marcos, and replaced him with Cory Aquino, Ramos, Estrada, Macapagal Arroyo, BS Aquino. The question is, is there any one of these individuals who succeeded Marcos, who have done a better job?

      • Pinoy in my opinon is not corrupt. He is just a weakling pushover. He values his friends so much that he was taken advantage by his so called friends. My countrymen please do not vote for a known corrupt robber nor a sweet but a weakling candidate. We should love our country.

      • Try to do elimination game list all the good projects of Marcos and the corruption+human rights violation, and you might end up with negative results. Dont forget, we are still paying up to this day billions of US dollar borrowed by Marcos that went to the unknown…

        We do not deny the good projects Marcos did during the first term, but do not deny as well the billions of pesos that disappeared and went to his families bank account. Marcos’ removal came earlier, but Philippines is on a nose dive as we can no longer make good of our debts from IMF and World Bank. Philippines during the final years of Marcos, is technically living on debt, US started to decline lending to Ph by then…

    19. Command responsibility is a dead word in Pilipino ethical lexicon. What are fall guys for? Filipino honesty is a theme for a humorist.

    20. Sometime ago, I chanced upon a news inside the business pages about an allegation that some P350M has been paid the President for the approval of the merger between PLDT and Smart. Unfortunately, I could not locate it anymore.

      Knowledgeable people who know the dynamics of illegal gambling assert that there is always a fixed share for the Office of the President, in the same manner there are shares given all bigwigs down the line. So if the President is not taking it, who is pocketing it?.

    21. Will the IBP or any of the do-gooders please stand up and sue Benigno? Surely, those groups have money to pay for the filing fee. Otherwise, they are all eunuchs who have no guts to stand up for their publicly-ranted advocacies.

    22. Leodegardo Pruna on

      Immediately after the installation of the mother of the so called restoration of democracy as presdient, corruption began to trickle down to the barangays. What was before concentrated at the top became widespread. The democracy was then change to democrazy. We have to be aware that the love of money is the root of all evil. God bless the Philippines.

      • That’s the ironic part of it. Filipino politicians are craving for democracy because if dictatorship they can’t corrupt. This is DEMOCRACY Filipino Politician and evil society style.

    23. Aquino is a lawless president. He deems rules, regulations, and laws to be guidlines that can be broken as he wants. He thinks nothing applies to him.

      • Your ridiculous! if he’s lawless then he should have ordered your execution and many of your likes since the beginning of his term.

    24. Jose A. Oliveros on

      PeNoy may not be corrupt personally. But under the Revised Penal Code, there is such a thing as principal by indispensable cooperation who is equally liable as the principal by direct participation. Corruption under PeNoy’s regime flourished because he ignored or tolerated the commission of corruption making him a principal by indispensable cooperation.

      • Leodegardo Pruna on

        Birds of the same feather flocks together. Who would believe that P-Noy is not in the group if not the head of the group of KKK? God bless the Philippines.

    25. laguatanlawzen.com on

      Aquino and his corrupt ilks are truly NOT HONEST, period. It is public knowledge what is happening in the government. Sana tatamaan ng kidlat yong korap na kalbo na yan pati yong mga KKK members at lahat na YELLOW MOBS.

    26. The writer has said a lot and all of them are true. The Abnoy, with his immediate family and allies can be ranked as the most corrupt, in the annals of our history.

      • your wrong. Macoy and pandak are the most corrupt in the annals of Phis history. Erap (puro porma), Ramos (tabako) and Penoy are next in the hierarchy.

    27. Hell yeah. What is the point of having a president that’s last to know if a problem exists and responsible for nothing that goes wrong.

    28. In short, it’s a case of the rich and powerful against the common tao. While, many of the illegal and anti-poor happenings in the country, everything goes on ‘unchecked’ because they’re benefiting the rich and oligarchs, anyway. I hope the time won’t come when there will be a literal face off between the haves and the have-nots, which will bring about a real and drastic transformation which the country needs. Let’s not forget the current lessons from Guatemala, Argentina and in other countries of the world.

      Quo vadis, Philippines?

      • Bonifacio Claudio on

        We can count on Congress until it mutated into Tong-gress. But Congress does not see PNoy as corrupt, and Tong-gress are honorable men.

    29. Si Aquino ay hindi corrupt!! Siya ay katulad lang ng inihagis na malaking ahas sa lupa, na ang trabaho ay mang-akit sa tao na gumawa ng kasalanan!
      Ang DAP at pork barrel ay katulad ng mansanas na ipinain kay Eva at Adan!
      Kaya si Aquino ay hindi corrupt! Ewan kung anong tawag sa ginagawa niya!

    30. Many people seem to think that letting him finish his term will then bring justice will appear like magic.

      Those people are fooling themselves if they think that Aquino will have to answer for anything.
      Who will charge him ? His lapdogs the Ombudsman or the Dept of Justice ? The next President ?
      It’s a tradition in the Philippines to pardon the previous corrupt plundering president.

      When most of the senate, over 100 house rep’s are corrupt, when the Ombudsman and Justice Sec are appointee’s and subservient to the president then forget about justice.

      The Philippines is out of stock. Sorry for the inconvenience.

      • that’s why Duterte should become the next President. one of his actions will be is to dissolve congress (as per various media interviews), by dissolving congress, 50% of the corrupts exterminated. unfortunately he will not run.

    31. Noynoy and the first Aquino president may not be personally corrupt but due to their incompetence or tolerance of corruption of their kamag-anak, kaibigan and kabarilan, we’ve lost billions of pesos of money.

      During the Cory Aquino presidency, the Filipinos suffered a multi-billion dollar loss of selling of priceless arts. It was dubbed by the latest columnist Max Soliven as, “The greatest crime during the Cory regime was the multi-billion dollar loss of selling off priceless arts.”

      During her presidency, we continuously paid billions of dollars for the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant, but she mothballed and did not use it although we badly needed the power plant due to shortage of electricity. Because of that, our economy deteriorated more and investors avoided then the Philippines.

      Now, Noynoy is tolerating the corruption of his friends too. Where can you find a government paying penalty worth P7.50 billion to a consortium of LRT 1-Cavite extension because of unfulfilled obligations as part of sovereign guarantee under its concession agreement. Wala pa ngang tinatayong bakal ng riles ang consortium, pero magbabayad na ang gobyerno ng P7.50 billions. Hindi pa ba matatawag na kaangahan at corruption ang pangyaring ito?

    32. This is not new to Phils. Why? Past president are the same and they went to Jail…Marcos, Estrada, Arroyo and next to the line is Aquino!

      Sorry, sir. Marcos did not go to jail.

    33. True, Aquino is not corrupt. But because he is an idiot, corruption has flourished and gotten worse in the five years he has been in office.

    34. Roldan Guerrero on

      Aquino is a master of the Art of Surrender as mentioned by Atty. Homobono Adaza. The Ex. Lawmaker must have sufficient basis to say this. What many Filipinos do not know is Aquino is also a master of “BRIBERY” He has bribed everybody around him to pursue his desire in demolishing his foes. It should be then conclusive that Aquino BRIBED those who know his EMBEZZLING an LOOTING ACTIVITIES. He might have been very succesful in hiding his ILLEGAL ACTIVITIES but I am very sure , if these things do not come out now, 2016 is waiting for the exposure of his crimes.

      2016 is waiting for the exposure of his crimes?
      Not quite sir, if the Smartmatic PCOS/OMR nachines are used, then Corrupt Aquino’s corrupt successors will rule!

      • do not forget roldan that all the 3 pretenders to the throne are all cronies or friends of boy sisi. kunwari lang yung paeklat ni biNOY pero pag nanalo sya walang kasong magpo-prosper laban kay boy sisi. ang sigurado lang na magkakaso pag si biNOY ang nanalo ay sina abadingding, lolong, prosy, dinkydoo baka pati si de singko. lalo na kung si poe-ppet ang manalo. baka pati si abadingding at lolong ay malibre sa kaso at hindi maimpeach si a MORAL less.

      • i think you’ve lost your appetite. the most corrupt president ever? I don’t think so. Penoy is in the hierarchy but not the most corrupt. We have ist honor – Macoy; 2nd honor – Pandak; 3rd honor – Erap. Perhaps Penoy is next if where talking of how he manage the affairs of our gov’t. but personally corrupt? I don’t think so.

    35. Nancy Bulok Cake on

      Simple mathematics. Compare P4.5 million a “third-hand” Porsche 911 Turbo sportscar with the billions of pesos or dollars that the Binays STOLE from the Philippine government. Why don’t you Makabenta mention something about the obviously ill-gotten wealth of the Binays. Are you one of the columnist under the payroll of Binay? Did Binay promised you, Tiglao and Tatad any ambassadorial positions just in case he will be the President? Do you know that nine out of ten OFWs don’t trust the Binays and believe that the Binays really STOLE money from the government. Isinusuka ang mga Binays sa mga gatherings o parties ng mga OFWs sa ibat-ibang bansa. Hindi lang yan, ang sabi nila “Paano maging president si Binay, e wala man lang personalidad. Mukha pang magnanakaw. Sinong international leader ang makikinig kay Binay. Pangit na nga, mukha pang magnanakaw.” Let us all pray to save the Philippines from the Binays.


      Pero corrupt pa rin si Aquino!
      Walang basis ang tira mo kay Tiglao at Tatad.

      • simple lang ang mathematics nacy bulok cake, nung panahon ni pandak as you call her, erap at tabako ang smuggling ay averaging $3Billion yearly. panahon ni boy sisi $19Billion a year. sabi nga ni boy sisi sa sona nya P200Bilyon ang nawawalang taxes taon taon. i presume ikaw ay ofw kasi sabi mo suklam ang ofw kay biNOY. kayo ang bumubuhay sa pilipinas at hindi yung sinasabing economic policy ni boy sisi. $25B ang ipinadadala nyo taon taon sa mga kaanak nyo dito. together with the bpo industry, which by the way boy pickup’s handlers are claiming to be boy pickup’s idea, both of you as ofws and bpo industry is injecting about $50B yearly sa ekonomya na nagpapayaman kina henry sy, ramon ang, pangilinan-salim, ayala, tan etc. btw, yung $19B taon taon na smuggling ngayon ay galing sa IMF-world bank at hindi hula lang.

      • To :Nancy Bulok cake


        Mukha po yatang mali kayo sa sinasabi ninyo na isinusuka na si Binay sa lahat ng parte ng mundo lalo na dito sa Middle east i.e Saudi Arabia
        Kasi po sa totoo lang marami po siyang natulungan na OFW dito at sa totoo rin po di dapat maging batayan ang kulay ng balat sa pagdadala ng pamamahala.Salamat po