Panelo: Up to bank to release Duterte’s transactions
The President’s chief legal counsel said on Thursday it was up to the bank to release President Rodrigo Duterte’s bank transactions to dispute he had over P2 billion in his bank accounts.
“You must remember that the document signed by the President was authorizing the bank to reveal his account. So the ball is on the bank to do it, not on the President’s,” lawyer Salvador Panelo said in an interview with reporters in Malacañang.
Panelo issued the statement after Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV revived his accusations that Duterte had more than P2 billion in the bank.
“The allegation is an old rehash of his nonsensical accusations against the President. If you recall, hiningi na niya noon ‘yun and may mga dala siyang dokumento. According to him, yun ang proof nya na mayroong P211 million. Now, when it was shown to the bank officials, the officials said that’s not ours, so it’s fake,” he said.
“So kung fake noon, kung may bago man siyang dokumento, fake na naman yan. You lie on one, you lie on all. Siguro hindi ninyo pinapansin kaya nagpapresscon, naghahanap ng publicity for himself,” he added.
Trillanes said it has been months since he first exposed Duterte’s bank accounts during the campaign season but Duterte has yet to reveal the history of his bank transactions.
Panelo said they already signed a waiver authorizing the Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) to open his bank account.
“So tapos na ang trabaho namin, iba nga yung Presidente noon e, hindi pa siya Presidente,” he said.
But why could Duterte not just release his bank records?
“No, that’s for the bank to release. Kasi under the law, they cannot release, but we signed a waiver, so nasa kanila na yun,” Panelo said.
Asked if the waiver was still valid, he said, “Of course. It’s been valid ever since. It’s not been recalled so it’s valid.”
BPI earlier said it would continue “protecting client information and preserving the trust bestowed on us by our clients all these years.” RAM/rga