Drilon: Senate may also probe Mercado
MANILA, Philippines –The Senate may also investigate former Makati City Vice Mayor Ernesto Mercado over his alleged unexplained wealth if a member initiates a probe on it, Senate President Franklin Drilon said on Thursday.
“Kung may mag-file ng resolution at iyan ay irefer sa Blue Ribbon committee o kung saan man, yaan po ay maiibestigahan,” Drilon said in a radio interview.
(If a resolution will be filed and will be referred to the Blue Ribbon committee or elsewhere, then that will be investigated.)
“Kung may sapat na pruweba at kung may katiwalian, at kung ano ang batas na dapat ayusin para hindi na iyan maulit – dahil ang dahilan naman na iyan ang pakay ng mga imbestigasyon sa Senado – not to find criminal offense, but to aid legislation, ano ba ang maayos na batas natin dito? Yaan po ang layunin ng isang congressional investigation,” he further said.
(If there’s enough evidence and if there’s anomaly, and if there’s a need for a law to prevent it from happening again because that’s the reason why we have these investigations in the Senate— not to find criminal but to aid legislation. That’s the purpose of a congressional inquiry)
An erstwhile ally, Mercado turned against Vice President Jejomar Binay, whom he accused of receiving kickbacks when he was still the mayor of Makati City and for allegedly amassing unexplained wealth using dummies.
During Tuesday’s hearing of the Senate Blue Ribbon subcommittee, Mercado exposed more properties allegedly owned by the Vice President, including a unit at The Peak Condominium under the name of a certain Ariel Olivar.
But the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) being headed by the Vice President turned the table against Mercado and claimed that Olivar was Mercado’s dummy.
Binay’s spokesman, Cavite Governor Jonvic Remulla, earlier said that Mercado was the real owner of the said condo unit.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.