• The noose tightens on JPE


    In naming Senate Minority Leader Juan Ponce Enrile as the mastermind of the pork barrel scam—based on a report prepared by the Office of the Ombudsman—it would seem that the noose is tightening on one of the country’s oldest and longest-serving public officials.

    And while no one expects Enrile to eventually end up in prison owing to his advanced age, his career ends in the worst way imaginable. He is months away from turning 90, and even if he lives for another decade or two, Enrile can no longer hope to end his public life in a blaze of glory.

    How sad for the man who just one year ago impressed the Filipino people with his masterful handling of the impeachment trial of former Supreme Court chief justice Renato Corona. Back then, Enrile displayed his mastery of the law when he served as presiding judge of the Senate acting as impeachment court.

    To be fair to the man, history will always judge him as one of the key players of the original Edsa People Power Revolt of 1986. Philippine history might have taken a different turn had then Defense Secretary Enrile not partnered with then Armed Forces of the Phils. vice chief of staff Fidel Ramos, and withdrawn their support for Ferdinand Marcos.

    He did briefly become part of the Cabinet of President Cory Aquino. But the two clearly had differences that could never be bridged.

    Surprisingly, Enrile still managed to remain in government service, culminating in his being elected Senate President.

    This was the closest he would get to the Philippine presidency, and he was at least head of a co-equal branch of government.

    Then came the pork barrel scam. Initially, it seemed that Janet Lim Napoles was the brains behind the billion peso scam. But as Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago insisted during Napoles’s appearance before the Blue Ribbon committee, someone else was the likely mastermind.

    Yes, Senator Santiago. She had declared herself the mortal enemy of Senator Enrile ever since the latter released what the former considered an insulting pittance for Christmas operations of each member of the Senate last year.

    Like Enrile, Santiago is considered one of the country’s sharpest legal minds. And like Enrile, she too aspired for the presidency.

    How frustrating it must be for JPE to now see Maid Miriam being perceived by the public as a heroine in the pork barrel scam. Her grilling of Napoles may not have elicited any admission of guilt, or identification of Enrile as the scam’s true mastermind, but she still managed to perform credibly well during that face off.

    With plunder charges now filed by the Ombudsman against Napoles, Enrile and several other suspects, it would seem that the colorful career of JPE—former administrator of martial law turned EDSA hero turned Cory Aquino administration destabilizer turned able congressman and senator turned impartial impeachment court judge—must now end with his having to defend himself and what remains of his reputation against charges that he robbed the country blind.


    Please follow our commenting guidelines.


    1. Matthew Parkes on

      Masterful handling of the impeachment trial?

      If you think disregarding the Constitution and the rule of law is masterful then clearly you are cut from the same cloth as Aquino.

      Enrile should have been hanged for his mishanding of the impeachment farce. Then again, he should have been hanged for treason long ago… and for protecting his son accused of homicide and some believe to be a serial killer.

    2. Read the report. You got stiffed by a misleading headline.

      “An investigative team of the Office of the Ombudsman has named Senate Minority Leader Juan Ponce Enrile as the mastermind of the alleged P10-billion pork barrel scam—not businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles, according to official documents obtained by Inquirer.”


      But if you read the pdf file of the Inquirer itself, the Memo states:

      ” III Scope of the Investigation.

      This investigation is centered on the 345,000,000.00 audited PDAF of Senator Juan Ponce Enrile.”

      So the conclusion that Enrile is the mastermind of the 10 billion scam is a lie. The report states that he is the unseen hand in connection with his 345 million PDAF.

      That does not make him less of a porker, perhaps, but he is not the mastermind of Napoles’ entire operation, as is concluded in the article.

    3. Simon Benigno Arroyo on

      Truth will expose evil, as well as, setting one soul free.
      For a person who is in public service for life, to amaze billions is suspicious. It does not require logic, just plain common sense to digest the truth. Whatever justification he makes, he is still answerable with crime of conflict of interest and double compensation, if he work as private practitioner. I know, in Canada a government officials especially PM with businesses, are required to declare and place the business in blind trust. Enrile start with nothing, just a bright lawyer from Harvard.
      He can be perfect with law (as lawyer) but not with justice.

    4. This man has to be honored till this last few years of his life. BUT, he willfully insisted to do his own way due to wanting, hungry of bread and power even to this time that he IS moving closer and closer to the mother earth (soil) where he and every one of us goes back soon to fertilize the ground. NO matter how far have you acquired earthly knowledge, yet, you will end up and get united with the ground soil. Everything you achieved in this life are ALL in vain because we are created as the ‘lowest of the low’ as it is fully written (temporary life).

    5. Enjoy your loot together with the rest of the group. It will not be enough to buy you aircon system where you will all end up! Repent!