Rufus Rodriguez seeks SC hand in stopping pork barrel scam case
Cagayan de Oro Rep. Rufus Rodriguez on Friday said he would seek the help of the Supreme Court (SC) to stop his pork barrel scam case before the Office of the Ombudsman.
In a statement, the solon said he would file a petition for certiorari and prohibition in the Supreme Court to suspend the proceedings in the Ombudsman after he and eight other former and incumbent lawmakers were slapped with malversation, graft and direct bribery complaint over the pork barrel scam.
“I am filing a petition of certiorari and prohibition in the Supreme Court that will suspend the proceedings in the Ombudsman pending the remand of the complaint back to the Department of Justice (DOJ) for proper proceedings with due notice and hearing to be afforded to me so that I can answer all allegations against me and present my evidence,” he said.
Rodriguez said the signatures on the pork barrel documents furnished to him by the Commission on Audit (COA) were forged.
“When I received 18 documents from COA regarding this matter, I had all the documents examined by the NBI which came out with an official finding that all my 18 signatures in all 18 documents were forgeries,” Rodriguez said.
The lawmaker tasked in sponsoring the landmark government legislation the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law added he was not given due process to air his side during the NBI investigation.
“I expected the DOJ to summon me so that I can face my accusers and read the evidence against me. But I was not given a chance to present my side. There was no due process. I was not given due notice and hearing,” he said.
The solon allied with the Aquino administration maintained he did not know and had never received money from accused pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles.
“I do not know Ms Janet Napoles personally or otherwise; I have never met Ms Janet Napoles nor any of her employees personally anywhere at any time; I never had any transaction whatsoever with Ms Janet Napoles nor any of her employees or any NGO/person associated with her; I do not know and have never met personally any officer/functionary of any nongovernment organization (NGO) associated with or owned by Ms Janet Napoles; and I never received any amount of money from her,” Rodriguez said.
Rodriguez is part of the third batch of pork barrel scam cases. He is accused of receiving P2.099 million in kickbacks from Napoles in his alleged dealings with her NGOS to implement ghost projects for kickbacks.
He is the chair of the House of Representatives Bangsamoro ad hoc committee, which deliberated on the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law, the proposed measure that seeks to implement the government peace deal with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
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