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There is no question that controversial businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles should “tell all”—that is, testify to everything she knows about the pork barrel scam she is alleged to have masterminded. But should Justice Secretary Leila de Lima broadcast details of her ongoing negotiation with Napoles to the entire world? The prudent thing to do, for legal purposes and for political reasons, would have been to issue a simple statement, that they were in talks, and then to leave it at that.
This could be the 2016 elections. If good leaders emerge, the economy will grow and become inclusive. If not, hunger, poverty and desperation will hasten the nation’s descent into a failed state status. To avoid the latter, each and every Filipino must ensure a positive outcome in 2016.
When Janet Lim Napoles “surrendered” in Malacañang in August last year, she was cosseted like royalty and then escorted by no less that President Aquino and some Cabinet officials to ensure her “safety” en route to a holding facility in Camp Crame. That show of extraordinary concern for anyone who should have been unceremoniously thrown in jail was truly unprecedented. Except for that close circle of cabalists, no one really knew what the deal was.
I am writing this letter in my humble capacity as a concerned resident of Magalang, Pampanga, the hometown of former Technology Resource Center (TRC) director general and now “temporary state’s witness” in the case of the so-called “pork barrel scam”—Dennis Cunanan.
By Randy David
We welcome the Ombudsman’s decision to file plunder and graft and corruption charges against Senators Enrile, Estrada and Revilla and several others who have been implicated in the P10-billion pork barrel scam. But, knowing how our legal system works, we would be naive to think that the trial may now smoothly proceed.
Oriental Mindoro Rep. Reynaldo Umali should stop terrorizing the judiciary with his reckless public threats to impeach the justices of the Supreme Court.
By Conrado de Quiros
Miriam Santiago had an interesting piece of advice to graduates. They didn’t have to wait until they could vote, she said, to be able to remove the scammers from public office.
By Conrado de Quiros
The first is Miriam Santiago’s call on Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales to start filing charges in the Sandiganbayan against the lawmakers implicated in the Janet Napoles scam. “It’s been six months now…. I think the public is getting jaded by these public revelations in the Senate probe (without) seeing any action. We cannot allow public interest to die. Plunder is just too important to the national economy.”
By Artemio V. Panganiban
Why is the Office of the Ombudsman (OOO) taking so long to act on the PDAF (Priority Development Assistance Fund) scam? Six months ago, the Department of Justice (DOJ) filed its complaint for plunder, graft, bribery and malversation and unloaded its “truckload of evidence” against 38 respondents, including three senators. Yet up to now, the OOO has not indicted any of them in the Sandiganbayan. Why? many impatient readers ask.
By Amando Doronila
Sen. Sergio Osmeña III hit the bull’s-eye on March 18 when he called President Aquino “an honest and good man but an awful manager.” Osmeña’s political loyalties are unpredictable, and political observers sometimes define him as an administration ally. Others say his primary loyalty is to no one but himself.
It’s as clear as day: The campaign season has started. And Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago’s advice to voters makes profound sense: Don’t vote for those involved in the pork barrel controversy. But don’t stop there, she said. Shun as well those who have remained “consistently silent” in the face of staggering criminality in public office, those who refuse to take their colleagues to task for their corruption, those whose political considerations trump their sworn duty to root out and condemn venality in government.
But why is the proposal to form a special court to try cases arising from the pork barrel scam being dismissed so peremptorily? Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano’s proposition deserves at least some serious thought, but two of his colleagues—Senators Francis Escudero and Teofisto Guingona III—have immediately thumbed down the idea.