Yang’s SC plea is ‘desperate’ attempt to distract Senate probe — Gordon
MANILA, Philippines — The filing of a petition at the Supreme Court by former presidential economic adviser Michael Yang is part of “desperate attempts” to distract the blue ribbon panel from its probe into the government’s purchases of pandemic response items, Senator Richard Gordon said Friday.
“Ang pagsampa niya ng kaso sa Korte Suprema ay bahagi ng desperadong tangkang pagpapaikot sa Senate Blue Ribbon Committee sa isinasagawa nitong imbestigasyon sa katiwaliang naganap sa gitna ng pandemya,” Gordon, chairman of the blue ribbon committee, said in a statement.
(His filing of a case before the Supreme Court is part of desperate attempts to distract the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee from its ongoing investigation into the anomaly that happened amid the pandemic.)
Yang, through his lawyer, recently filed a petition asking the Supreme Court to nullify the arrest orders and subpoena issued by the Senate against him.
Yang’s petition argued that the blue ribbon committee gravely abused its discretion for several reasons and that the arrest orders, as well as the lookout bulletin order against the Chinese businessman, have no legal basis.
He also asked the Supreme Court to stop the blue ribbon committee from compelling him to disclose his personal properties and business transactions.
“Noon pang simula bago siya manumpa sa Senado, ilang beses niyang itinatanggi ang simpleng katotohan ng lokasyon ng kanyang bahay sa Forbes Park. Nagpakita lamang siya sa Senado pagkalabas ng ‘Order of Contempt’ sa kanya,” Gordon went on.
(From the start before he took his oath in the Senate, he has denied the simple truth of his residence in Forbes Park. He also only showed up in the Senate after an ‘Order of Contempt’ was issued against him.)
Further, he said Yang has “lied several times” during the course of the investigation, including his relations with Pharmally Pharmaceutical Corp.
Pharmally, which was awarded over P8.6 billion worth of supply contracts in 2020, is at the center of the blue ribbon panel’s ongoing investigation.
During the hearings, several senators saw alleged favoritism in the awarding of government contracts to the firm as they doubted the financial capacity of Pharmally since it was only established in 2019 with a small capital of P625,000 when it secured the medical supply deals.
Yang earlier told senators “he has nothing to do” with Pharmally. But it was later disclosed that the Chinese businessman served as a guarantor for Pharmally and even lent money to the firm to help them fulfill some of the government’s orders last year.
However, Yang maintained he did not finance Pharmally, insisting that his role was limited to introducing Linconn Ong, the firm’s director, to friends who could provide financial assistance.
Yang’s name first surfaced in the Senate investigation after a 2017 video showed him introducing Pharmally officials to President Rodrigo Duterte in Davao City.
“Matapos niyang manumpang sasabihin lamang ang katotohanan, ilang beses pang nagsinungaling si Michael Yang. Sinabi niyang ang papel niya lang daw sa Pharmally ay ang pagpapakilala sa mga opisyal nito sa Presidente at wala ng iba. Ito ay pinabulaanan ng kanyang dating interpreter na si [Linconn] Ong, na inaming hindi lang ‘yon ang ginawa ni Yang,” Gordon said.
(After he took his oath to tell only the truth, Michael Yang has lied several times. He said that his only role is that he introduced Pharmally officials to the President and nothing else. This is countered by his former interpreter Linconn Ong, who admitted that is not the only thing that Yang did.)
“Sobra-sobra na ang pagbibigay ng Pilipinas. Sa pag-uubos ni Michael Yang sa oras ng Senado at Korte Suprema, marapat alalahanin ang kasabihang ‘(H)e who comes to court must come with clean hands’,” Gordon said.
(The Philippines has given too much. With Michael Yang wasting the time of the Senate and the Supreme Court, this saying must be remembered ‘(H)e who comes to court must come with clean hands.’)
“Ipinagtatanggol ng Komite ang karapatan ng mga taumbayan, na higit mas matimbang kaysa sa pribilehiyo ng isang banyagang nabubuhay sa kasinungalingan,” he added.
(The committee will defend the Filipino people’s rights, which have more weight than the privilege given to foreigners living in lies.)
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