Jinggoy Estrada furlough bid to oversee daughter’s oath opposed
State prosecutors opposed the motion of detained Senator Jinggoy Estrada to administer the oath taking of his daughter Janella Ejercito, who won as San Juan vice mayor in the recent polls.
In its opposition filed before the Sandiganbayan Fifth Division, the prosecution said that the movement of Estrada as a detention prisoner must be limited due to his non-bailable charge of plunder.
It added that Estrada’s movement should be restricted especially because his bail petition for plunder had been denied.
The prosecution added that the court cannot depart from its earlier rulings denying Estrada his requests for a temporary leave from detention.
The court earlier denied Estrada’s requests for furlough for Christmas, New Year and birthday, among others.
Estrada was also denied furlough to pack up his things and wrap up his duties as senator before his term ends.
“To grant his request would unduly create an impression to the public that accused Estrada, being a high-ranking public official, is a favored detainee over and above other similarly situated detainees,” the prosecution said.
“Surely… no plausible and cogent reason exists for this Honorable Court to depart from the ratio decidendi of its previous rulings,” the prosecution added.
In his motion filed before the anti-graft court’s Fifth Division, Estrada asked for leave to attend Janella’s taking of oath of office on June 28, 8 p.m. on Shaw Boulevard in Mandaluyong city.
He asked the court for permission to attend the event at his own expense and with the usual security escorts.
He said he feels like it’s his duty as the father to administer his daughter’s oath of office.
“Considering the importance and significance of this event, it will be a father’s duty, obligation and more importantly, his price if he will be the one to administer the oath of office to his daughter,” Estrada said in his motion.
“This may very well be his last official act as Senator of the Philippines,” the outgoing senator added.
He also asked the court’s permission to attend the special gathering of his family and constituents after Janella’s oath of office at the same venue that will last until 2 a.m. on June 29.
Estrada is accused of plunder for allegedly receiving P183 million in kickbacks from his Priority Development Assistance Funds which were allegedly spent in ghost projects through the bogus foundations of accused mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles.
He was denied bail, and remains in police custody with co-accused Sen. Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr. at the Philippine National Police Custodial Center.
Another accused, the elderly Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile, was allowed by the Supreme Court to post bail for humanitarian considerations.
Estrada was also accused of 11 counts of graft for violating Section 3(e) of the anti-graft law for allegedly causing injury to government and giving undue preference to Napoles’ bogus organizations Masaganang Ani Para sa Magsasaka Foundation and Social Development Program for Farmers Foundation.
He has sought the dismissal of his graft cases for being redundant with the plunder charge. IDL/rga
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