Napoles doesn’t want to testify at the Senate, says lawyer
MANILA, Philippines—Janet Lim-Napoles is not inclined to appear and testify at the Senate, her lawyer said on Thursday.
“Sya mismo ang nagsabi, ayaw nyang pumunta sa Senado, ayaw nyang magsalita sa Senado. Ngayon pa lang naririnig na natin ang intramurals dyan ano? (She said it herself, she doesn’t want to appear at the Senate, she doesn’t want to speak at the Senate. As early as now, we hear this kind of intramurals, right?)” Napoles’ lawyer, Lorna Kapunan, said in a radio interview.
“And I don’t think this is the right time and the right place (for her to give her testimony),” Kapunan said.
Napoles, who has been in jail for serious illegal detention of her cousin and whistle-blower Benhur Luy, was subpoenaed by the Senate to appear and testify in the chamber on November 7 in connection with the P10 billion “pork-barrel” scam.
Asked if Napoles was willing to answer allegations that she had deals with some senators, the lawyer said, “In the Ombudsman, the answer is yes. In the Sandiganbayan, the answer is yes.”
A plunder complaint was also lodged against Napoles at the Office of the Ombudsman, which will file a case at the Sandiganbayan once it finds probable cause to indict her.
But when asked again why Napoles would not testify in the Senate if she has nothing to hide, Kapunan said, “Because the Senate is not a court of law. The Senate is [conducting investigation] in aid of legislation…”
As to whether Napoles has something explosive to tell when she testifies at the proper forum, Kapunan said, “I think this will point to the people, confirm the belief of our people that the PDAF has been abused, and abused by public officials down to the level of mayor…”
PDAF stands for Priority Development Assistance Fund also known as “pork barrel” funds.
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