Bagatsing: Napoles already cleared my name in pork barrel scam
Manila (5th district) Representative Amado Bagatsing on Friday said he should not be included in the third batch of pork barrel scam cases to be filed before the Ombudsman when it was alleged mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles herself who cleared his name.
Right after the Philippine Daily Inquirer broke the news that the third batch of cases against lawmakers involved in the pork barrel scam will be filed on Friday, Bagatsing told Radyo Inquirer 990AM that he had filed a perjury case against Napoles. After that, Napoles issued a statement denying Bagatsing’s involvement in the scam that allegedly allowed her and lawmakers to pocket taxpayers’ money through the now defunct Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF).
Bagatsing said he even furnished copies of documents to the Department of Justice to show that the request for PDAF did not come from his office.
All the three documents linking him to one of Napoles’ bogus nongovernment organizations did not use his office letterhead. According to Bagatsing, one was printed on plain bond paper, the other on a generic House of Representatives letterhead, and the third on a letterhead bearing both the seal of Malacañang and the name of the House of Representatives.
He also pointed out that the said project involving him in the scam was only worth P800,000.
“Di ko alam bakit ako pinagtitripan nila. Marami d’yang daang milyon (piso ang proyekto),” he said.
(I don’t know why they involved me. There are others who have hundreds of million pesos-worth of projects.)
Bagatsing said the evidence speaks for itself and that investigators should have seen the anomaly.
He also pointed out that the case will be filed two weeks after he declared his decision to run as Manila Mayor.
He said he was not a member of the Liberal Party but he supported President Benigno Aquino III and Interior Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas II, who ran as vice president, during the 2010 elections.
In the last midterm elections, the main contenders for the mayoralty post were former president Joseph Estrada of the United Nationalist Alliance, who won, and Alfredo Lim of the Liberal Party.
Bagatsing said a lot of people had been approaching him and it prompted him to “accept the challenge” and announce his decision to run for mayor in 2016.
He said he thinks his rivals may be working to discredit him ahead of the elections.
“Alam naman ng taga Maynila na tayo ay hindi sangkot d’yan,” he said. “Hindi tayo nagpayaman, hindi tayo nagkurakot.”
(The people of Manila know that we are not involved in that. I did not enrich myself. I am not corrupt.)
He said only someone not involved in the scam will sue Napoles and would make her retract her statements. IDL
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.