• ‘Prosecute Abad over pork scam’

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    ABAD DAY Lawyer Bonifacio Alentajan (below) shows a copy of the motion he filed with the Sandiganbayan on Monday at the time Budget Secretary Florencio ‘Butch’ Abad (Upper Photo) was conducting a budget briefing at the House of Representatives. PHOTOS BY MIGUEL DE GUZMAN AND MIKE DE JUAN

    President’s alter ego ‘most guilty among perpetrators,’ Sandigan told

    The lawyer of one of the accused in the two graft charges against Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile has asked the Third Division of the Sandiganbayan to include Budget Secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad in the charge sheet for being the “most guilty” among the suspected perpetrators of the so-called “pork barrel” scam.

    Lawyer Bonifacio Alentajan filed his motion with the anti-graft court on Monday.
    The Sandiganbayan Third Division has set the hearing of Alentajan’s motion for August 27.

    100815_alentajan-04_mikedj

    Lawyer Bonifacio Alentajan

    Alentajan is the counsel of former Technology Resource Center director-general Antonio Ortiz, one of Enrile’s co-accused who remains at large.

    Alentajan asked the anti-graft court to order the prosecutors as well as the Office of the Ombudsman to amend the charge sheet and implead Abad as principal accused after conducting a preliminary investigation.

    “It appears clearly from the preceding accusatorial allegations that Department of Budget and Management [DBM] Secretary Florencio B. Abad, an alter ego of President Benigno C. Aquino III, is the most guilty among perpetrators of the case plunder, graft and corrupt practices,” Alentajan said in his motion.

    Abad’s exclusion from the charges was unjustified, saying the Budget secretary “appears to be the most guilty among the perpetrators of the charges.”

    Alentajan said based on a letter that the Department of Justice (DOJ) submitted before the Office of the Ombudsman in September 2013, it was established that the DBM has a considerable role in the alleged scam and that Abad, as the head of agency, must be held accountable.

    “The direct participation and indispensable cooperation of issuing the SARO [Special Allotment Release Order] and Notice of Cash Allocation by DBM Secretary Abad, are the proximate causes and determining factors of the said criminal offenses,” the lawyer added.
    A principal refers to a person directly responsible for an alleged crime.

    Alentajan said Budget Undersecretary Mario Relampagos and DBM employees Rosario Nuñez, Lalaine Paule and Marilou Barre were all included as co-accused in all the pork barrel cases at the Sandiganbayan, even if they had no approving power and had “just performed their duties upon the orders of Secretary Abad.”

    “His unjust exclusion as the principal accused granted him unwarranted benefits and advantage due to the manifest partiality, evident bad faith and gross inexcusable negligence by Justice Secretary Leila M. De Lima and Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales,” Alentajan said.

    “Wherefore, premises considered, it is most respectfully prayed that the Panel of Prosecutors of the Ombudsman be ordered to amend the subject information and implead Department of Budget and Management Secretary Florencio B. Abad as the principal accused in the said criminal cases…after conducting required preliminary investigation,” he added.

    Alentajan noted that Abad, who assumed office in June 2010, “should have been jointly charged with the other respondents,” adding that the exclusion “constitutes selective or discriminatory prosecution.”

    Enrile is accused of receiving P172 million in kickbacks out of his P345 million PDAF from 2004 to 2010 by pouring the funds ino bogus projects through non-government organizations (NGOs) allegedly run by Janet Lim-Napoles.

    The Office of the Ombudsman filed the P172-million plunder case last year against Enrile, his former aide Jessica Lucila “Gigi” Reyes as well as Napoles, her nephew Ronald John Lim and employee John Raymund de Asis. Lim and de Asis both remain at large.

    Enrile and several others were also charged with 15 counts of graft, which pertained to the allegation of undue injury caused to the government in the amount of P345 million.

    The cases stemmed from complaints filed before the office by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and lawyer Levito Baligod as well as the Ombudsman’s Field Investigation Office (FIO).

    Ortiz, who also remains at large, is a respondent in two counts of graft before the court’s Third Division as the senator’s co-accused.

    “Bakit hindi kasama si Abad? Bakit ung kliyente ko lang nasama diyan, minor employee lang ung kliyente ko [Why was Abad not included? Why only my client, he is just a minor employee],” Alentajan told reporters.

    When asked why he filed such a motion only now, he said it was only recently that he was able to obtain a copy of the Supreme Court’s decisions declaring the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) unconstitutional in November 2013 as well as the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) partly unconstitutional in July 2014. The ruling gave him strong basis, Alentajan said.

    Last month, Alentajan–former president of the Philippine Constitution Association (Philconsa)– filed a complaint against Abad before the Office of the Ombudsman for allegedly giving funds from the DAP to bribe senators for the conviction of then-Chief Justice Renato Corona.

    He alleged that the Budget secretary violated the Anti-Plunder Law and the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, usurpation of legislative power and authority and obstruction of justice.

    ‘Baseless’
    Abad dismissed the complaint as “baseless.”

    “They can file whatever they want, we will respond to that. I really don’t know [his motives]. He can do whatever he wants to do. Our lawyer will take care of that,” he said.

    “It’s easy to accuse… easy to file a case, but those ought to be substantiated. They should be able to provide evidence and I think they will never do that,” Abad added.

    Anakpawis weighs in
    THE Anakpawis party-list also on Monday questioned why Abad was spared from the third batch of pork barrel cases filed by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) with the Office of the Ombudsman.

    In a statement, Rep. Fernando Hicap questioned why only “small fish” was implicated in the multibillion-peso fund scam.

    “[The government] wants the public to believe that it is fighting corruption but it comes out very short,” Hicap said.

    He noted that Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (Tesda) director general Joel Villanueva and Rep. Rufus Rodriguez of Cagayan de Oro City were the only allies of the ruling Liberal Party who had been included in the third set of charges filed with the Ombudsman by the NBI.

    “Lawmakers cannot pull this off without collusion from the Budget secretary himself on how to slip the funds through different means,” the militant lawmaker said.

    Anakpawis and other members of the Makabayan bloc in the House of the Representatives asserted that all those involved in the pork barrel scam should be held accountable including Abad and the President himself.

    “The public once again has been duped by this government as its supposed anti-corruption drive absolves itself from the mess despite its hand in fund juggling of multi-billion peso government funds,” Hicap said.

    With LLANESCA T. PANTI AND NEIL A. ALCOBER

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    15 Comments

    1. I for one request the authorities concerned to act faster and mold the iron while it is hot. Otherwise the case will just dissipate in thin air. Prosecute those guilty people and incarcerate them. Amen.

    2. It’s but time to block the Yellow gang of BS Aquino the 3rd to run again the affairs of our nation. They are all hypocrites! Why will we not chose a decent, honest man who has already shown us his strong political will to instill national discipline! Look at Davao now! It is now very progressive and very peaceful — a place feared by hoodlums and druggists! I think, Rod Duterte, at this point of time in our political history, is the best alternative! Let’s give ourselves a chance to truly improve ourselves economically with Duterte….

    3. Aquino and abad are the brains, they should have been among the accused already.remember when the woman surrendered only to Aquino? she was briefed as to who to implicate. but she knows who the real brain is, and the plot against other politicians. she is afraid to open her mouth. de lima and morales should be kicked out of theor positions, they don’t deserve them

    4. Abad is a very bad person. He has the same skin color of Binay, Black..
      Both of them bad people…. kasing itim ng burak and kanilang budhi o wala na silang budhi… mahiya namn kayo mr. abad, ipinapapakain ninyo sa mga pamilya mo nakaw sa kaban ng bayan…kaya kayo yumaman..mga ganid….

    5. Ronto Caniada on

      How about Binay’s family, they are the worst crooks in the Philippines. Why are you pinking on Mr. Abad. Go to the most severed politician like Binay’s family.

      • ronto, so far the opposition are grasping straws to put the binays in jail. and trillanes cant even produce documents not witnesses. what is this, hide and seek?. I wont vote for binay, but look at the facts and proofs before giving a verdict.

      • Billions from the DAP fund are unaccounted for by ABAD. Abad was named in the Napoles confession as the one who mentored and introduced her to the Pork barrel scam.

        Every Pork barrel allocation was approved by Abad to Napoles and yet he was not investigated and refused to turn over records to the COA.

        Binay may be a crook but he is small time compared to Aquino and Abad.

    6. Easy for Abad to not being worried since no government agency will investigate any misuse of the funds unless Aquino wants to charge another opposition senator.

      De Lima and the Ombudsman are shielding the Liberal Party, requests from the COA for Pork barrel fund records are ignored without penalty.

      Even if 1000 lawsuits are filed against Abad no one will investigate so why should he be worried ? He’s had years to alter or destroy records. A real investigative agency would of taken his records years ago with a court order but since this is the Philippines they are allowed to break the law without having to worry about the Dept of Justice, Ombudsman or the COA

    7. Such arrogance indeed! Let them file any charges they want “our lawyer will take care of that” says abad. I wonder if the lawyer/s he is referring to are attys de lima and Morales. It’s not so much that I want to see him and his cohorts suffer but it is really the thought that these criminals can flaunt their untouchability openly that riles me. They arrogantly tell all to bring it on and then show to all their proud strut while snickering and bad fingering everyone. I want to see their comeupance as soon as possible like it was yesterday.

    8. BSAquino and Abad are both conspirators of the PDAF/DAP/and the ousting of Corona and corrupting the Justice System.
      They have to be accountable.

      Please , make sure to have a hold departure before they escape and leave the country once they are both out of office.
      Pretty sure, they are conspiring for that escape too. Roxas is their only Freedom .
      We cannot allow another term of such crimes to our poor countrymen.

      • Sen Poe is also on board the Aquino express.

        Senate President Franklin Drilon and Senator Grace Poe on July 29th thumbed down a proposal by Majority Leader Alan Peter Cayetano to reopen the probe into the January 25 Mamasapano incident.

        In a letter dated July 23 urging Poe to reopen the probe, Cayetano cited the need to learn why the Ombudsman charged SAF personnel who survived the debacle.

        That’s the reson Poe gave the report to Ombudsman Morales instead of submitting it to the senate so that it would be impossible to reopen since now Poe claims it has to be voted on to be reopened.

        There won’t be any vote to reopen the report now with the Aquino allies in congress who only do what they are told unless they want to join the 3 jailed opposition senators for giving their pork barrel allocations to fake non government organizations.

    9. Abad should also be included in the case. He is the principal author of this DAP/PDAF which was declared by the Supreme Court unconstitutional. He is the most guilty among others as the head of DBM. Likewise, Aquino should also be charge, Abad being the Secretary of the President as an alter ego. Therefore, the act of one is the act of all..

      • Abad is the author of the DAP scam, The government has been stealing the Pork barrel funds years before Abad. Even after the pork barrel scandal the government is still trying to pass a budget with P424 billion in allocated funds, in other words passing a budget with 424 billion in pocket money for the government officials which will disappear.

        Abad still has not accounted for the missing Pork barrel funds or the Dap fund money.

        Abad is also the one who helped Napoles set up the fake Non government organizations to steal the Pork barrel funds according to Napoles. Even with Napoles confessing no government agency investigated Abad.