• SC urged to allow probe on alleged operator


    THE judiciary should allow itself to be investigated by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) just like the legislature, which has commenced and facilitated a probe on the multi-billion-peso pork barrel scam.

    Rep. Ben Evardone of Eastern Samar made the call following reports about an influential Supreme Court (SC) operator who was tagged as the judiciary’s version of Janet Napoles, the alleged mastermind of the pork barrel scam hounding the legislature.

    Court administrator Midas Marquez last week said that the SC is already conducting its own investigation about the identity and operation of the woman, a certain Arlene, who reportedly financed the parties and trips of associate justices and judges.

    “They [SC] should be open to investigation in order [not]to raise doubts on the credibility of the results of the probe,” the lawmaker said in a radio interview.

    Evardone noted that if the members of the judiciary are not hiding something or if the allegations have no basis, then it would be much better if they will allow the NBI to conduct its own probe.

    “It’s the NBI that should conduct the probe, otherwise the people will doubt its results,” he added.

    The legislature is currently grappling with the pork barrel fund scam after lawmakers were tagged behind the operation of Napoles who allegedly set up at least 20 bogus non-governmental organizations where money from the lawmakers’ Priority Development Assistance Fund was channeled.

    The executive, meanwhile, is hounded by controversies surrounding the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP), which involved the realignment of government savings to the projects of purported Palace allies in the Senate.

    Legal experts and constitutionalists viewed the DAP, which also involves billions of taxpayers money, as illegal and insisted that only Congress has the power to realign government funds.


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