Whistle-blowers tag 2 Napoles contacts at TRC
More News from Gil C. Cabacungan
Pork barrel scam whistle-blower Benhur Luy has tagged Dennis L. Cunanan and Antonio Y. Ortiz as the contact persons of detained businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles at the Technology Resource Center (TRC).
Based on documents given by Luy to the Inquirer, eight supposedly bogus nongovernment organizations (NGOs) linked to Napoles obtained a total of P580.85 million in pork barrel funds from three senators—Ramon Revilla Jr., Juan Ponce Enrile and Jinggoy Estrada—and 23 members of the House of Representatives, using TRC as conduit from 2006 to 2009.
The representatives mentioned in the documents included Rozzano Rufino Biazon (now customs commissioner) and Joel Villanueva (now Technical Education and Skills Development Authority director general).
Luy said he and other staff members of Napoles would take care of the paperwork for the pork barrel allocations while Napoles would talk directly to then TRC Director General Ortiz and his deputy, Cunanan, from 2007 to 2009. Cunanan took over Ortiz’s post in January 2010.
Cunanan has not replied to the Inquirer’s calls to his office for the past three days. His boss, Science and Technology Secretary Mario Montejo, did not reply to the Inquirer’s questions.
The eight Napoles NGOs that Ortiz and Cunanan had cleared to take legislators’ allocations from the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) were the Social Development Program for Farmers Foundation Inc. (led by Luy), the People’s Organization for Progress and Development Foundation Inc. (led by whistle-blower Merlina Suñas), the Masaganang Ani Para sa Magsasaka Foundation Inc. (led by Marina Sula), the Philippine Social Development Foundation Inc. (led by Evelyn de Leon), Agricultura para sa Magbubukid Foundation Inc. (led by Jocelyn Piorato), the Agri and Economic Program for Farmers Foundation Inc. (led by Nemesio Pablo Jr.), the Countrywide Agri and Rural Economic Development Foundation Inc. (led by Mylene T. Encarnacion and Simonette Briones) and the Philippine Agri and Social Economic Development Foundation Inc. (led by Mae Ann Kilapkilap).
Luy said the three senators were the biggest contributors to the Napoles NGOs that used the TRC as an implementing agency—Revilla (P140 million in 12 tranches), Enrile (P70 million in 10 portions) and Estrada (P50 million in 6 releases).
The representatives who also supposedly tapped the Napoles NGOs for TRC were Erwin Chiongbian (P43.55 million); Conrado Estrella III (P37 million); Samuel Dangwa (P36 million); Manuel Ortega (P34 million); Constantino Jaraula (P30 million).
Rizalina S. Lanete (P24 million); Rizalina Seachon (P20 million); Edgar Valdez (P20 million); Marc Douglas Cagas (P19 million); Arthur Pingoy (P19 million); Federico Sandoval (P11 million); Salacnib Baterina (P10 million); Antonio Serapio (P6 million); Isidro Real (P5 million).
Biazon (P5 million); Villanueva (P4.3 million); Rodolfo Valencia (P4 million); Rufus Rodriguez (P3.5 million); Victor Francisco Ortega (P3 million); Arrel Olano (P2.5 million); Ernesto Nieva (P2 million); and Amado S. Bagatsing (P1 million).
Based on the Commission on Audit (COA) special review of PDAF releases from 2007 to 2009, the TRC handled the highest amount of pork funds audited during the period, at P2.613 billion. This meant that TRC also dealt with other bogus NGOs not affiliated with the Napoles group.
In its reply to the COA, the TRC management claimed its role in these deals was “recommendatory” as the lawmakers themselves picked the NGO recipients.
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