SEN. Antonio Trillanes 4th wants an inquiry into the apparent refusal of the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) to cooperate with the Ombudsman’s investigation on the alleged hidden wealth of President Rodrigo Duterte.
Trillanes asked the Committee on Banks, chaired by Sen. Francis Escudero, to compel AMLC Executive Director Mel Georgie Racela to explain why he allegedly declined to give the Ombudsman the bank details of the President.
Trillanes made the move in reaction to the Ombudsman’s decision to terminate the investigation on the President’s bank accounts.
“Based on the statement of the Ombudsman, the only reason why the investigation against Duterte was closed, without prejudice to reopening in the future, is the refusal of AMLC to submit vital data, specifically, the detailed bank transactions of Duterte,” he said.
“Let us remember that the Executive Director of AMLC was appointed by Duterte and has since been proactively protecting his political master,” Trillanes said.
He added, “Now, in the interest of transparency and accountability, I am calling on the Senate Committee on Banks to conduct an inquiry so we could summon the AMLC and question the legality of its refusal to comply with the Ombudsman’s request.”
“Ultimately, the truth about this very important issue is stored in the data storage of AMLC and BPI,” the opposition senator said.
Solicitor General Jose Calida on Thursday said it would be “a waste of time” for the Senate to investigate the alleged hidden bank deposits of the President and her daughter, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, as he described Trillanes’ alleged evidence against them as “garbage.”
Reacting to Calida’s claim, Trillanes said, “If what I have is nothing but garbage, then why are they panicking?”
“And why can’t Mr. Duterte just accept my challenge for him to sign a waiver and if I am wrong in my allegations then I would resign immediately as Senator and voluntarily walk in any jail of his choice?” he added. BERNADETTE E. TAMAYO