'BONG' REVILLA's SPEECH FOR SUPPORTERS, NOT CRITICS

JUNE 11 --DISPUTING the Palace’s claim that people disapproved of his privilege speech on Monday, the camp of Senator Bong Revilla said the controversial speech was in fact designed to address the almost 20 million Filipinos who elected him to office. “What better way to thank and express his appreciation to them but through a song, singing it there at the plenary hall of the Senate,” said Revilla’s spokesman, lawyer Joel Bodegon. In an interview with MST, Bodegon said Revilla’s speech was also designed to be conciliatory, a call for unity, and for government institutions, like the Senate and the House of Representatives, to regain the trust of the Filipino people. “His privilege speech was very reconciling and the way he delivered it very presidential,” Bodegon said, adding that the manner of the speech unashamedly reflected the “real” Bong Revilla. “It’s really showbiz because he’s a part of the world,” Bodegon said, referring to the audio-visual presentation where Revilla sang a song – Salamat Kaibigan [Thank Your Friend] – he himself composed. “He wants to prove that showbiz people are also capable of becoming good public servants. They can also perform their job as politicians well. So we should not look down at showbiz people entering politics,” said Bodegon. “Senator Bong called on the President to attend to the country’s tremendous problems, like rebuilding the badly-hit communities in the Visayan region,” he added. In fact, Bodegon said, Revilla was among the first to bring help to victims of super typhoon Yolanda, “but it did not come out in the media because he did not want it to be publicized. He silently helped the Yolanda victims.” READ MORE...

ALSO: Palace agrees with netizens’ negative response on Revilla speech

JUNE 10 --Big brother is watching and he likes what he sees.Malacańang on Tuesday revealed that it monitored the reaction of netizens on Senator Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr.’s privilege speech Monday. “Our new media team has been tracking citizens’ reaction to Senator Revilla’s privilege speech delivered yesterday,” Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. told Palace reporters. “The overwhelming trend is negative and we agree with our bosses,” he said. Coloma was referring to Revilla’s so-called farewell speech, which included pleas of unity for President Benigno Aquino III and a video accompanied by his singing. Revilla accused Aquino of letting “political agenda” dictate the direction of the pork barrel scam investigation.
“You still have two remaining years. It isn’t right that you and your administration will be remembered for only jailing non-allies. Jailing your oppositors should not be the only achievement and legacy you will be leaving behind,” he said. But Coloma pointed out that, “People are intelligent and discerning to be able to separate the chaff from the grain and to be able to separate truth from lies.” Asked what he thought about Revilla’s singing, the spokesperson said it was still covered by the freedom of expression. “We are a democracy and what he did is probably covered, not only by the rules of the Senate, but also of the freedom of expression,” he said.THIS IS THE FULL REPORT

ALSO: Revilla’s speech, music video not a hit among netizens

JUNE 10 --As has been the common practice in the age of social media, netizens took to Twitter to react on the speech of Senator Ramon Revilla. Revilla is one of the three senators who have been charged with plunder before the Sandiganbayan for allegedly benefiting from the P10-billion pork barrel scam. On Monday, he delivered a speech in the Senate, calling on President Benigno Aquino III to end the political mudslinging. He then made a roll call to thank his colleagues. He ended his speech with a music video to the tune of his original composition titled “Salamat, Kaibigan.” Some netizens thought Revilla was already resigning from his post, while others expressed disappointment in the tone and content of the embattled senator’s speech. Contrary to the speculation of many netizens, Revilla did not resign. READ NETIZENS TWEET REACTING TO REVILLA'S SPEECH...

ALSO: Revilla still hot on Palace run

Unfazed by the charges he’s facing, Sen. Ramon Revilla Jr. said on Saturday he would run for president in 2016 if there’s a public clamor for it. “If we need to sail in 2016, as long as our countrymen ask for it, I’ll be up to it because I’m innocent of the charges being hurled at me,” Revilla said in an interview on radio dwIZ. “I can look every Filipino in the eye, and I have nothing to fear.” His lawyer, Joel Bodegon, said in a telephone interview that Revilla’s indictment had emboldened him to consider running for the highest office in the land in May 2016. And if the public clamor for him to run for president “grows [louder]” and “snowballs,” Bodegon said he believed Revilla would go for it. Bodegon said he believed it was Revilla’s earlier announcement of his plans for 2016 that prompted the Aquino administration to prosecute him in the pork barrel scam. “That was his announced intention before, and that earned him the ire of Malacańang. He is perceived as one of the contenders. That’s why he’s in trouble now,” Bodegon said. In his Independence Day speech, President Benigno Aquino III declared that politics had nothing to do with the indictment of the three senators, insisting they were accorded due process. READ MORE...

ALSO: Despite raps, JPE, Jinggoy, Bong can still run in 2016 – Comelec

JUNE 14 --Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. believes Senate Minority Leader Juan Ponce Enrile and Senators Ramon Revilla Jr. and Jinggoy Estrada can still run in the 2016 polls despite the plunder case against them in the Sandiganbayan. “Everybody is innocent unless there is a final conviction,” he said. Brillantes said the three senators would be disqualified from running only if they are convicted with finality. “They can still run – and they know that – for any position they want even if they are in jail,” he said. Brillantes said then Zamboanga del Norte Rep. Romeo Jalosjos was able to run for Congress despite his conviction of rape and six counts of acts of lasciviousness on Nov. 16, 2001. “That is already an old doctrine,” he said. “I don’t see any problem as long as they are not convicted with finality.” Estrada had announced that he is willing to be a running mate of Vice President Jejomar Binay in 2016. Revilla is reportedly being considered as the standard bearer of Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats in 2016. Estrada, Enrile and Revilla are now on their second and last terms at the Senate. Evidence-- Interior and Local Government Secretary Manuel Roxas II said yesterday people against whom there is evidence in the alleged misuse of pork barrel funds will be charged regardless of their political affiliation. READ MORE...

ALSO: Napoles vows vindication in court

JUNE 14 --Janet Lim-Napoles will prove her innocence when she gives her tell-all account of the pork barrel fund anomaly in court. Her lawyer, Bruce Rivera yesterday told The STAR: “We will present our case in the trial.” However, he refused to go into details, citing the sub judice rule since the plunder and other criminal cases against Napoles and several lawmakers have been filed in the Sandiganbayan. Rivera said they will question before the Sandiganbayan the Office of the Ombudsman’s indictment of Napoles. They filed yesterday a motion for judicial determination of probable cause and sought the immediate dismissal of the charges, he added. They will also appeal the anti-graft agency’s decision denying Napoles’ application for immunity from criminal suit in the fund anomaly in a motion to be filed on Monday, he said. Rivera questioned a television news report showing supposed records of Napoles, including ledgers showing the amounts paid to lawmakers in advance. “The reporter should show the documents because if they’re authentic, that would be tantamount to obstruction of justice,” he said. Rivera said Napoles will continue to cooperate with the investigation of the Department of Justice (DOJ) on the Priority Development Assistance Fund racket. “We will still help the government,” he said. “The inclusion of her children in the cases is proof that there are no conditions that we set to help the government in the quest for truth.” Rivera said the cooperation of Napoles disproves reports that she had requested the government to exclude her children from the cases. They will submit documentary evidence in their possession to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to prove the claims in the two affidavits of Napoles, he added. They are now coordinating with NBI agents for this purpose, Rivera said. THIS IS THE FULL REPORT.


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‘Revilla’s speech for supporters, not critics’


Revilla

MANILA, JUNE 11, 2014 (MANILA STANDARD) By Macon Ramos-Araneta, Joyce P. Pańares - DISPUTING the Palace’s claim that people disapproved of his privilege speech on Monday, the camp of Senator Bong Revilla said the controversial speech was in fact designed to address the almost 20 million Filipinos who elected him to office.

“What better way to thank and express his appreciation to them but through a song, singing it there at the plenary hall of the Senate,” said Revilla’s spokesman, lawyer Joel Bodegon.

In an interview with MST, Bodegon said Revilla’s speech was also designed to be conciliatory, a call for unity, and for government institutions, like the Senate and the House of Representatives, to regain the trust of the Filipino people.

“His privilege speech was very reconciling and the way he delivered it very presidential,” Bodegon said, adding that the manner of the speech unashamedly reflected the “real” Bong Revilla.

“It’s really showbiz because he’s a part of the world,” Bodegon said, referring to the audio-visual presentation where Revilla sang a song – Salamat Kaibigan [Thank Your Friend] – he himself composed.

“He wants to prove that showbiz people are also capable of becoming good public servants. They can also perform their job as politicians well. So we should not look down at showbiz people entering politics,” said Bodegon.

“Senator Bong called on the President to attend to the country’s tremendous problems, like rebuilding the badly-hit communities in the Visayan region,” he added.

In fact, Bodegon said, Revilla was among the first to bring help to victims of super typhoon Yolanda, “but it did not come out in the media because he did not want it to be publicized. He silently helped the Yolanda victims.”

“This is a democracy. [Critics] are all entitled to what they think,” Bodegon said, but he stressed there was nothing wrong in asking President Benigno Aquino III to do his job with love rather than hate and being wary of leaving a legacy of partisanship rather than unity.

“Lead the country towards unity and not partisanship. Push our nation’s interest and not political agenda. The opportunity being afforded for one to become a President is very rare. And President Aquino is lucky,” Revilla said in his emotional speech

“It is not right and not good that you and your administration would be remembered for sending to jail those who are not your allies. Jailing your oppositors should not be the only achievement and legacy you will be leaving behind,” said Revilla.

Revilla also urged Aquino to stop divisive politics and revenge and help promote unity and not differences.

Bodegon revealed the aim of the speech after Malacańang said netizens have an “overwhelming” negative view of Revilla’s privilege speech.

“Our new media team has been tracking citizens’ reaction to Senator Revilla’s privilege speech,” Communications Secretary Sonny Coloma said. “The overwhelming trend is negative and we agree with our bosses.”

Coloma said the Palace’s new media team gathered the reaction of 2,751 netizens and blogs, online news sites, and other social media platforms showed that 99.93 percent of the respondents were against Revilla.

Coloma, however, acknowledged that netizens comprise only a limited part of the populace and that there will also be efforts to track the sentiments of citizens who are not online.

Coloma also said he would not categorize Revilla’s speech as ridiculous. “We are in a democracy. And I think what he did is covered not only by the rules of the Senate but by freedom of expression as well,” he said.

But he disagreed with Revilla’s claim that the President was a vengeful person and was on a vendetta against his political opponents.

“As I know him, he is not vengeful. And if we go by the pulse of the Filipino people, it is clear that a big chunk of our citizenry does not agree with that claim,” Coloma said.

Palace agrees with netizens’ negative response on Revilla speech By Kristine Angeli Sabillo INQUIRER.net 3:53 pm | Tuesday, June 10th, 2014
 


Senator Ramon ‘Bong’ť Revilla Jr. during his privilege speech at the Senate Building, Pasay City. LEO M. SABANGAN II/INQUIRER

MANILA, Philippines — Big brother is watching and he likes what he sees.

Malacańang on Tuesday revealed that it monitored the reaction of netizens on Senator Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr.’s privilege speech Monday.

“Our new media team has been tracking citizens’ reaction to Senator Revilla’s privilege speech delivered yesterday,” Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. told Palace reporters.

“The overwhelming trend is negative and we agree with our bosses,” he said.

Coloma was referring to Revilla’s so-called farewell speech, which included pleas of unity for President Benigno Aquino III and a video accompanied by his singing.

Revilla accused Aquino of letting “political agenda” dictate the direction of the pork barrel scam investigation.

“You still have two remaining years. It isn’t right that you and your administration will be remembered for only jailing non-allies. Jailing your oppositors should not be the only achievement and legacy you will be leaving behind,” he said.

But Coloma pointed out that, “People are intelligent and discerning to be able to separate the chaff from the grain and to be able to separate truth from lies.”

Asked what he thought about Revilla’s singing, the spokesperson said it was still covered by the freedom of expression.

“We are a democracy and what he did is probably covered, not only by the rules of the Senate, but also of the freedom of expression,” he said.

Revilla’s speech, music video not a hit among netizens INQUIRER.net 6:17 pm | Monday, June 9th, 2014


SCREENGRAB FROM INQUIRER VIDEO: BONG REVILLA'S SPEECH

MANILA, Philippines—As has been the common practice in the age of social media, netizens took to Twitter to react on the speech of Senator Ramon Revilla.

Revilla is one of the three senators who have been charged with plunder before the Sandiganbayan for allegedly benefiting from the P10-billion pork barrel scam.

On Monday, he delivered a speech in the Senate, calling on President Benigno Aquino III to end the political mudslinging. He then made a roll call to thank his colleagues.

He ended his speech with a music video to the tune of his original composition titled “Salamat, Kaibigan.” Some netizens thought Revilla was already resigning from his post, while others expressed disappointment in the tone and content of the embattled senator’s speech. Contrary to the speculation of many netizens, Revilla did not resign.





VIDEO: REVILLA'S SPEECH

Revilla still hot on Palace run By TJ Burgonio Philippine Daily Inquirer  12:19 am | Sunday, June 15th, 2014

Senator’s win means people cleared him of pork raps, says lawyer
 


Senator Ramon ‘Bong’ ?ť Revilla Jr. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

Unfazed by the charges he’s facing, Sen. Ramon Revilla Jr. said on Saturday he would run for president in 2016 if there’s a public clamor for it.

“If we need to sail in 2016, as long as our countrymen ask for it, I’ll be up to it because I’m innocent of the charges being hurled at me,” Revilla said in an interview on radio dwIZ. “I can look every Filipino in the eye, and I have nothing to fear.”

His lawyer, Joel Bodegon, said in a telephone interview that Revilla’s indictment had emboldened him to consider running for the highest office in the land in May 2016.

And if the public clamor for him to run for president “grows [louder]” and “snowballs,” Bodegon said he believed Revilla would go for it.

Bodegon said he believed it was Revilla’s earlier announcement of his plans for 2016 that prompted the Aquino administration to prosecute him in the pork barrel scam.

“That was his announced intention before, and that earned him the ire of Malacańang. He is perceived as one of the contenders. That’s why he’s in trouble now,” Bodegon said.

In his Independence Day speech, President Benigno Aquino III declared that politics had nothing to do with the indictment of the three senators, insisting they were accorded due process.

Vindication

“This development would be the impetus for him to consider running. What could be a bigger vindication than people electing him to the highest office? His election means the people have cleared him of any culpability of the charges filed against him,” Bodegon said.

In the radio interview, Revilla said it was difficult for him to announce his political plans this early, and took a swipe at the administration, which he accused of “politicking.”

“We can see that this administration is engaged in too much politicking. They’re demolishing their rivals; now they’re targeting VP Binay,” he said, referring to Vice President Jejomar Binay.

Lakas-CMD president Rep. Martin Romualdez of Leyte declared that the party would remain a political force in 2016, despite the indictment of its chair, Revilla.

In January 2013, months before the pork barrel scam broke, Revilla said the party was looking to field him in the 2016 presidential election.

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has said Revilla and Senators Jinggoy Estrada and Juan Ponce Enrile can run for public office in 2016 despite being indicted for plunder and graft in the P10-billion pork barrel scam.

Malacańang agrees.

“That is consistent with the provision of the Constitution that one is innocent until proven guilty. The filing of the case is only the next step. There’s no conviction there yet,” deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said on state-run radio.

Revilla, Enrile and Estrada are facing arrest and long detention.

No need for ‘Boy Pickup’

Meanwhile, Revilla said there was no need for Interior Secretary Mar Roxas to pick up him and bring him to jail.

Revilla said he would go straight to jail once the Sandiganbayan issued a warrant for his arrest.

And while he’s ready to be thrown in the slammer, Revilla aired this challenge to the Aquino administration: Are you ready to jail your allies, too?

“I understand that ‘Boy Pickup’ is checking on our detention cell,” he said, referring to Roxas. “Maybe, he wants to pick me up again. He doesn’t need to. I’ll go there myself.”

In a privilege speech in January, Revilla claimed that President Aquino pleaded with him to vote for the conviction of impeached Chief Justice Renato Corona in 2012.

Revilla claimed that it was then Transportation Secretary Roxas who drove him to Bahay Pangarap, the President’s official residence, from Roxas’ home in Cubao, Quezon City. He called Roxas “Boy Pickup.”

Revilla was one of the 20 senators who voted to convict Corona for dishonesty in disclosing his assets.

On Friday, Revilla wondered aloud if the administration was ready to crack the whip and file charges against its allies implicated in the scam.

Someday truth will come out

“I’m ready to be jailed. What about them, are they ready too? Are they ready to jail their allies,” he said. “We’re ready, and we’re ready to clear our names.”

To the administration, he gave this advice: “Look around you. I hope you’re clean. Someday, the truth will come out.”

Malacańang has consistently stated that the administration is ready to prosecute the President’s political allies who will be found to be involved in the pork barrel scam.

Both Revilla and Estrada had expressed confidence of being acquitted of the charges in a fair trial.

Revilla also declared that he would not seek “special treatment” from the government. He said he had prepared himself and his family for his imprisonment.

Plunder is a nonbailable offense.

Never-ending nightmare

He welcomed last Friday’s raffle of the plunder and graft cases to three divisions in the Sandiganbayan as a crucial step to fast-tracking the process.

“If you ask me, I prefer to be jailed now just to get it over and done with. As things stand, I feel like I’m in jail already, although I’m still out. The earlier we do this, the better to put a stop to the trial by publicity,” he said.

Revilla likened his predicament to a never-ending “nightmare.”

FROM PHILSTAR

Despite raps, JPE, Jinggoy, Bong can still run in 2016 – Comelec By Sheila Crisostomo (The Philippine Star) | Updated June 14, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. believes Senate Minority Leader Juan Ponce Enrile and Senators Ramon Revilla Jr. and Jinggoy Estrada can still run in the 2016 polls despite the plunder case against them in the Sandiganbayan.

“Everybody is innocent unless there is a final conviction,” he said.

Brillantes said the three senators would be disqualified from running only if they are convicted with finality.

“They can still run – and they know that – for any position they want even if they are in jail,” he said.

Brillantes said then Zamboanga del Norte Rep. Romeo Jalosjos was able to run for Congress despite his conviction of rape and six counts of acts of lasciviousness on Nov. 16, 2001.

“That is already an old doctrine,” he said.

“I don’t see any problem as long as they are not convicted with finality.”

Estrada had announced that he is willing to be a running mate of Vice President Jejomar Binay in 2016.

Revilla is reportedly being considered as the standard bearer of Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats in 2016.

Estrada, Enrile and Revilla are now on their second and last terms at the Senate.

Evidence

Interior and Local Government Secretary Manuel Roxas II said yesterday people against whom there is evidence in the alleged misuse of pork barrel funds wbe charged regardless of their political affiliation.

“The point is we are just following evidence,” he said in Filipino.

“We assure the people that whatever coat you wear, evidence would prevail when charges are filed,” he said.

Speaking to reporters in Camp Crame yesterday afternoon, Roxas said all the records of Janet Lim-Napoles and Benhur Luy are with the Department of Justice.

Justice Secretary Leila de Lima has announced that another batch of cases will be referred to the Office of the Ombudsman, he added.

Roxas said President Aquino has a clear policy, posture and directive that all charges must be based on evidence.

“How can it be labeled as political persecution when this all started as a misunderstanding between Janet Lim-Napoles and Benhur Luy on alleged serious illegal detention, but names eventually cropped up?” he said.

“It is wrong to say that from the very beginning the Aquino administration targeted these personalities.”

Roxas said the Philippine National Police (PNP) will act professionally once the Sandiganbayan issues the warrant of arrest against Enrile, Estrada and Revilla.

“There is no intent to embarrass or demolish the dignity of the people involved in the case,” he said.

He had inspected the possible detention center at Camp Crame for high profile personalities linked to the pork barrel scam, Roxas said.

Chief Superintendent Reuben Theodore Sindac, PNP public information director, said the Custodial Center has a capacity for 130 detainees, and that only 70 inmates are there at present.

Construction inside the Custodial Center has been completed, he added.

Sindac said the international standard on Human Rights Law had prescribed the 3 meters x 3 meters size of the 56 detention cells.

Each detention cell has a double-deck bed, mattress, basic toilet, water faucet, pail and dipper, he added.

Roxas said the repair of the detention center is ready to accept the 54 people linked to the pork barrel fund scam.

However, the detention of 54 would be temporary, and that the Sandiganbayan would rule on their disposition, he added.

Multi-sectoral groups have called on the administration to prosecute all those involved in the pork barrel fund scam, regardless of political affiliation. – With Cecille Suerte Felipe

Napoles vows vindication in court By Edu Punay (The Philippine Star) | Updated June 14, 2014 - 12:00am 3 48 googleplus0 0

MANILA, Philippines - Janet Lim-Napoles will prove her innocence when she gives her tell-all account of the pork barrel fund anomaly in court.

Her lawyer, Bruce Rivera yesterday told The STAR: “We will present our case in the trial.”

However, he refused to go into details, citing the sub judice rule since the plunder and other criminal cases against Napoles and several lawmakers have been filed in the Sandiganbayan.

Rivera said they will question before the Sandiganbayan the Office of the Ombudsman’s indictment of Napoles.

They filed yesterday a motion for judicial determination of probable cause and sought the immediate dismissal of the charges, he added.

They will also appeal the anti-graft agency’s decision denying Napoles’ application for immunity from criminal suit in the fund anomaly in a motion to be filed on Monday, he said.

Rivera questioned a television news report showing supposed records of Napoles, including ledgers showing the amounts paid to lawmakers in advance.

“The reporter should show the documents because if they’re authentic, that would be tantamount to obstruction of justice,” he said.

Rivera said Napoles will continue to cooperate with the investigation of the Department of Justice (DOJ) on the Priority Development Assistance Fund racket.

“We will still help the government,” he said.

“The inclusion of her children in the cases is proof that there are no conditions that we set to help the government in the quest for truth.”

Rivera said the cooperation of Napoles disproves reports that she had requested the government to exclude her children from the cases.

They will submit documentary evidence in their possession to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to prove the claims in the two affidavits of Napoles, he added.

They are now coordinating with NBI agents for this purpose, Rivera said.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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