Ombudsman Morales: My job is to indict the corrupt
My job is to go after the corrupt.
This was the statement of Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales on Tuesday when asked for her reaction on Vice President Jejomar Binay’s continuous lead in the surveys despite the latter’s indictment for graft and malversation.
In an interview after she delivered a speech for a good governance lecture at the Ateneo De Manila University campus in Rockwell, Makati, Morales said it is not her duty anymore to sway the survey respondents who continue to choose Binay despite corruption allegations against him.
“What do you want me to say about the survey? Kung ang survey na yan, authentic, anong masasabi ko?” a combative Morales said.
According to the latest Social Weather Stations survey conducted Feb. 5 to 7 among 1,200 respondents, Binay’s survey ratings dipped to 29 percent from 31 percent in January. Despite the dip, Binay remains the frontrunner.
It may not be part of her job description to sway survey results, but she said it is part of her job to go after the corrupt.
“Ang trabaho ko lang, is to see to it that the corrupt gets indicted,” Morales said.
Morales denied timing the graft indictment against Binay at the time the latter is campaigning for the upcoming presidential elections.
The Ombudsman initially indicted Binay for graft, malversation and falsification of public documents on Oct. 12 last year, when Binay filed his certificate of candidacy.
The office also junked Binay’s appeal on Feb. 5, or four days before the start of the campaign period.
“Kung sasabihin nila ‘pag hindi inaksyunan, sasabihing ang tagal aksyunan. Ngayon naman na inaksyunan, sasabihin nilang timing daw. That’s just mere coincidence. No such thing as timing,” Morales said.
Morales said her office is not beholden to any one, not even the administration Liberal Party (LP).
Morales was appointed to the Ombudsman by LP chairman Pres. Benigno Aquino III in 2011. The Binay camp has accused Morales of being the mouthpiece of the LP and its standard bearer Mar Roxas.
“I am not beholden to anyone. Bakit ako indebted? I was in fact very reluctant to accept the position,” said Morales.
Binay and his son Junjun face indictment for graft, malversation and falsification of public documents for allegedly rigging the procurement for the design and construction of the P2.2 billion Makati City Hall Building II, deemed the country’s priciest car park building.
Vice President Binay was also recommended to be charged for plunder by the Senate Blue Ribbon subcommittee which investigated the alleged corruption in Makati when he was mayor.
Binay has decried politics in a bid to derail his presidential bid, calling the Senate investigation a political inquisition.
The Ombudsman said it would file the charges against Junjun sometime this week.
Meanwhile, it would file the charges against Vice President Binay after his term ends – unless he wins the presidency in 2016.
Morales said she would retire in 2018, and it is up to the next Ombudsman to handle the Binay cases under a possible Binay presidency.
“Anong magagawa ko? Basta nag-decide na kami, that’s my decision, it’s up to them how to enforce the decision. Kung mag-appeal siya, wala na sa aking poder yun,” Morales said.
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