IN BOSTON AFTER 31 YEARS OF SILENCE, NOY TO FILIPINO COMMUNITY: 'I WANTED TO GET EVEN'    

SEPT 23 --After keeping his peace for 31 years, President Aquino yesterday said he had planned to get even with the Marcoses for allegedly masterminding the Aug. 21, 1983 murder of his father, former senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr. “As the only son, I felt an overwhelming urge to exact an eye for an eye. Mr. Marcos and his ilk were like rabid dogs who had lost all reason,” said Aquino, who was then 23 years old, as he recalled his rage, but now in calm retrospect. “There was no longer any potential for dialogue; the only solution when confronted by a rabid dog is to put it down,” Aquino told the audience at the Robsham Theater in Boston College here, where he delivered a speech coinciding with the 42nd anniversary of the declaration of martial law by former President Ferdinand Marcos.

“I knew that (Marcos) was a formidable foe, but regardless of this, in those moments, all I wanted was to do to Marcos as he had done unto us,” Aquino said. He still vividly remembers the oppression suffered by his family under the late dictator. Speaking at Boston College near the house where the Aquino family spent years in exile during the early 1980s, the President recalled that it was in Boston where he gained strength and mustered the courage to fight evil. “It was here in Boston that I learned the value of introspection. I remember thinking then that here we are in exile, while the dictator is partying in Malacañang, raping the economy and oppressing our people,” Aquino said. “I consider my time here as among my formative years, fortifying me for the continuation of the struggle, and arming me with relevant experiences,” said Aquino who was a 21-year-old economics graduate from the Ateneo de Manila University when he flew to the US with his family.

He said the assassination of his father was the family’s lowest point, not knowing that the brutal murder of the former senator would spark a people power revolution that would oust Marcos and catapult his mother Corazon to the presidency in February 1986. *READ MORE...

ALSO: In Boston, Noy touts senators now in jail for corruption

SEPT 23 --BOSTON - By sending powerful officials to jail, including a former president and three senators, the administration has shown its commitment to the “straight path,” President Aquino said yesterday in a speech at Boston College here. “We used to think that the powerful and well-connected were beyond the long arm of the law. That is no longer the case. The straight and righteous path for these people will lead straight to jail,” Aquino told a crowd of mostly members of academe as well as US officials including Ambassador to the Philippines Philip Goldberg.

It was the first time that Aquino made public reference to the arrest of senators Juan Ponce Enrile, Jinggoy Estrada and Ramon Revilla Jr. as an achievement in his anti-corruption effort. The three are in detention for plunder in connection with the pork barrel scam.  “Since 2010, a chief justice was impeached for considering himself above the law, and is now facing charges in the regular courts. A former president and three incumbent senators are in detention, all of them facing charges of plunder,” he said. Former President and now Pampanga congresswoman is under hospital arrest while on trial for plunder. The three senators are detained at the Philippine National Police (PNP) Custodial Center at Camp Crame.

In 2012, the Senate convened as an impeachment court found then Supreme Court chief justice Renato Corona guilty of betraying public trust for failing to disclose all his wealth in his statements of assets, liabilities and net worth or SALN. Aquino also boasted of having steered the economy to sustainable growth after a “lost decade under the previous administration.” From an average 4.3 percent “consumer-driven” growth during the Arroyo administration, the country’s economy in terms of gross democratic product (GDP) rose 7.2 percent under the current leadership, Aquino said. “This is why, since taking office in 2010, we have worked to foster sustainability, by rebalancing our economy towards investments,” he told his Boston College audience.

“The good news is that capital is indeed coming in at an unprecedented rate,” he said. “Forty-two percent of all approved investments by our PEZA (Philippine Export Zone Authority) came only within the four years of our administration, while the other 58 percent took 15 years to accumulate,” he pointed out. “Since 2010, our economy has been growing at an average of 6.3 percent, and last year, we posted an economic growth of 7.2 percent, making us one of the fastest growing economies in the world,” Aquino added. *READ MORE...

(ALSO) Aquino dares critics: Charge my dishonest allies   

SEPT 23 --President Benigno Aquino III is challenging critics to file cases against his allies who have been perceived to be corrupt. "The courts are open. If they think that I have dishonest people around me, then all they have to do is file an appropriate case," Aquino responded to a question in a forum at Harvard University. Aquino said the Office of the Ombudsman will even investigate unsigned or anonymous complaints just "to ferret out those who are not treading the correct path." The president's remarks came after a consumers' group filed plunder and graft charges against Philippine National Police chief Director General Alan Purisima for allegedly amassing ill-gotten wealth.

Purisima, one of the officials known to be close to the Aquinos, has been accused of hiding the true value of his alleged mansion in Nueva Ecija and receiving bribes for the construction of another mansion inside Camp Crame. Another Aquino ally, Budget Secretary Florencio Abad, also remains hounded by corruption allegations after the Disbursement Acceleration Program he crafted was declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court. Abad was also implicated in the pork barrel scam by businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles herself, the central figure in the controversy. In his policy speech in Harvard and during his trip to Europe, Aquino trumpeted the detention of allegedly corrupt officials including former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and Sens. Juan Ponce Enrile, Jinggoy Estrada and Ramon Revilla Jr. -Louis Bacani THIS IS THE FULL REPORT

ALSO: LP execs, LP solons in top 10 list of DAP beneficiaries  

SEPT 23 --PHOTO: DOTC Sec. Joseph Emilio Abaya. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO – An opposition congressman on Tuesday bared a list of Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) beneficiaries in Congress. United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) Secretary General and Navotas Rep. Toby Tiangco e-mailed the list of the top DAP beneficiaries, of which the top 10 belonged to President Benigno Aquino III’s Liberal Party.

The top two recipients are LP high ranking officials – former Cavite lawmaker now Transportation Secretary and LP Acting President Joseph Abaya, and LP Vice Chair and Speaker Feliciano Belmonte, Jr. Tiangco is not part of his list of DAP beneficiaries. The list: – Abaya – P408 million; – Belmonte – P297.487 million; – Majority leader Neptali Gonzales II – P263 million; – Former Cavite Rep. Ayong Maliksi – P217.894 million;
– Former An Waray Rep. Florencio “Bem” Noel – P179,500 million; – Batanes Rep Henedina Abad – P176.619 million; – Former Laguna Rep. Edgar San Luis – P160.209 million; – Former Cebu Rep. Tomas Osmeña – P124,124 million; – Former Quezon Rep. Lorenzo “Erin” Tañada III – P120.581 million; – Batangas Rep. Nelson Collantes – P110 million; Batanes Rep. Henedina Abad, a Deputy Speaker, is the wife of Department of Budget and Management (DBM) Secretary Florencio Abad, the brainchild of DAP, known as an economic stimulus package.

Meanwhile, Noel is the independent mayoral bet in Tacloban who lost to Alfred Romualdez, the nephew of Ilocos Rep. and former first lady Imelda Marcos. Noel was endorsed by President Aquino and his sister celebrity host Kris Aquino.
Though not part of the top 10, other LP officials also received DAP funds – LP Secretary General Western Samar Rep. Mel Senen Sarmiento (P15 million), LP Parliamentary Caucus Deputy Chair for Visayas, Iloilo City Rep. Jerry Treñas (P14 million). All Deputy Speakers were also give n DAP funds – Abad, Isabela Rep. Giorgidi Aggabao (P10 million), Leyte Rep. Sergio Apostol (P8.7 million), Lanao Del Sur Rep. Pangalian Balindong (P45 million), Nueva Vizcaya Rep. Carlos Padilla (P18.87 million), and Antipolo Rep. Roberto Puno (P42.5 million). * READ MORE...

ALSO: Aquino’s favored LGU execs also major DAP recipients 

SEPT 25 --PHOTO: In today’s budget hearing of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Escudero asked department officials on the particulars of its total BuB fund amounting to P5.7 billion. As more details emerge on the use of the unconstitutional Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) based on documents the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) has been surrendering piece meal to Congress, 11 more local government unit (LGU) officials allied with President Aquino were revealed to have received millions in DAP funds aside from legislators with close links to the administration, the militant Bagong Alyansang Maka-bayan (Bayan) disclosed yesterday.

Bayan secretary general Renato Reyes Jr. said Aquino and Budget Secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad should be held accountable for lying for saying that DAP was not used similar to the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) or pork barrel. Bayan named Aquino’s allies who received millions in DAP funds for their pet projects as Mayor Carmen Petilla – P237 million, Mayor Oscar Rodriguez- P154 million, Gov. Jericho Petilla – P118 million, Gov. Victor Tanco – P87 million, Gov. Oscar Moreno – P81.5 million, Mayor Rodrigo Duterte – P80 million, Arthur Defensor P79 million, Mayor Darlene Antonino Custodio – P73.5, Gov. Raul Daza – P70 million, Gov. Joey Salcedo – P55 million, Mayor Evenly Uy – P54 million, and Mayor Nani Braganza – P52 million.

These local officials were separate from those who also received DAP funds, namely, former Cavite Rep. now Transportation and Communications Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya who got P408 million; Speaker Feliciano “Sonny” Belmonte Jr. with P297.48 million; House Majority Leader Neptali Gonzales Jr. with P263 million; Cavite Rep. Erineo “Ayong” Maliksi with P217.89 million; former An Waray Rep. Florencio “Ben” Noel with P179.5 million; Batanes Rep. Henedina Abad with P176.61 million; former Laguna Rep. Edgar San Luis with P160.2 million; Tomas Osmeña-with P124.124 million; former Quezon Rep. Lorenzo “Erin” Tañada with P120.581 million and Batangas Rep. Nelson Collantes who got P110 million.

The senators that received big DAP funds were Senators Teofisto Guingona III, P360.51 million; Francis Pangilinan, P310.8 million; Aquilino Pimentel III, P258.1 million; Sen. Loren Legarda, P250 million; Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile, P249 million; Gringo Honasan, P238 million; Francis Escudero, P235.5 million; Ralph Recto, P233.2 million and Vicente Sotto III, P214 million. Reyes said the fact that huge chunks of DAP went to lawmakers and their pet projects shows without doubt that DAP was used as pork. He said most of those who received a big share from the DAP were allies of Aquino that proved DAP was indeed presidential pork used for patronage politics and it exposes the Aquino regime as corrupt, no different from past administrations.*READ MORE...

ALSO: Raps vs Purisima affect entire PNP, Aquino — Roxas 

Charges hounding Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Alan Purisima have taken

their toll on not only the entire police organization but the presidency as well, Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas II yesterday admitted.

Roxas’ acknowledgment of the situation came amid the reaffirmation of trust and confidence of President Aquino on Purisima, even vouching for the latter’s good character amid graft and plunder charges filed against the PNP chief by some civic groups.
The DILG chief, in defending the agency’s proposed P104.5 billion for 2015 before the Senate committee on finance, found himself at the receiving end of senators’ grilling on the issues confronting Purisima whom Sen. Grace Poe said should consider taking a leave of absence pending the resolution of the case against him.

“We can’t deny that the PNP is affected, the entire PNP institution. Even the President is now being dragged, almost everybody, including me. That’s why it’s also good... and Purisima even said at the proper forum or once he returns, that he explains the issues raised against him,” Roxas told reporters in an interview after the hearing.
Documents presented before the committee chaired by Sen. Francis Escudero pertaining to the “renovation” of Purisima’s official residence in Camp Crame called the “White House” which were also submitted to Commission on Audit (CoA), however, raised more questions due to some notable conflicting entries information.

Submitted by PNP Director for comptrollership Police Director Rolando Purugganan, the absolute deed of donation entered into by the sponsors or donors of “White House” – Ulticon Builders’ Carlos Gonzales, lawyer Alexander Lopez for Pacific Concrete Corp. and Christopher Pastrana of CAPP Industries — it mentioned of a building to be given by them to the donee and not of a renovation of the said structure. The document was executed only last Sept. 3, supposedly few days before the CoA supervising auditor for PNP Preciosa Miranda, attesting even that the project’s construction cost stood at only P11.4 million. The issue first cropped up sometime last June, following claims made by some groups that the actual cost of renovation was P20 million and the reason given was the damage caused by Typhoon “Ondoy” which struck in 2009.*READ MORE...

ALSO Opinion Manla Times: An immature president  

Some say being vengeful is a sign of immaturity since one can’t simply forgive and forget what others have done. Worse, some of these unforgiving individuals, though not directly at the receiving end of such transgressions, never cease in persecuting those individuals or groups at fault. PNoy, is a prime example of that unforgiving human being, who does not know when to stop, even though the offending party is already languishing in jail or in the process of paying for his or her sins, like former President Arroyo. I am not a friend of Mrs. Arroyo, and I believe she deserves to be punished for her indiscretions while chief executive of the land.

However, I totally disagree with PNoy on his continued attacks on his predecessor, particularly in front of foreign leaders. Blaming Arroyo and the former officials of the past administration seems to be a common ingredient in almost all of President Aqiuno’s speeches here and abroad. But hitting the former administration repeatedly will never bring back the loss precious time and billions of pesos that were stolen or squandered. One wonders if Aquino gets any personal sense of fulfillment from endlessly lambasting the former President who is currently under hospital arrest? Our 50 something year old President… has yet to grow up. * * * No emergency powers for PNoy Finally, both houses of Congress have agreed on something so quickly…no emergency powers for PNoy, not just yet.*READ MORE...


READ FULL MEDIA NEWS REPORT:

I wanted to get even – Noy


President Aquino greets students and members of the local Filipino community at Boston College on Sunday. Aquino, whose family lived in Boston for several years, arrived in the US Saturday night for a five-day working visit.

BOSTON, SEPTEMBER 29, 2014 (PHILSTAR) Delon Porcalla - After keeping his peace for 31 years, President Aquino yesterday said he had planned to get even with the Marcoses for allegedly masterminding the Aug. 21, 1983 murder of his father, former senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino Jr.

“As the only son, I felt an overwhelming urge to exact an eye for an eye. Mr. Marcos and his ilk were like rabid dogs who had lost all reason,” said Aquino, who was then 23 years old, as he recalled his rage, but now in calm retrospect.

“There was no longer any potential for dialogue; the only solution when confronted by a rabid dog is to put it down,” Aquino told the audience at the Robsham Theater in Boston College here, where he delivered a speech coinciding with the 42nd anniversary of the declaration of martial law by former President Ferdinand Marcos.

“I knew that (Marcos) was a formidable foe, but regardless of this, in those moments, all I wanted was to do to Marcos as he had done unto us,” Aquino said.

He still vividly remembers the oppression suffered by his family under the late dictator.

Speaking at Boston College near the house where the Aquino family spent years in exile during the early 1980s, the President recalled that it was in Boston where he gained strength and mustered the courage to fight evil.

“It was here in Boston that I learned the value of introspection. I remember thinking then that here we are in exile, while the dictator is partying in Malacañang, raping the economy and oppressing our people,” Aquino said.

“I consider my time here as among my formative years, fortifying me for the continuation of the struggle, and arming me with relevant experiences,” said Aquino who was a 21-year-old economics graduate from the Ateneo de Manila University when he flew to the US with his family.

He said the assassination of his father was the family’s lowest point, not knowing that the brutal murder of the former senator would spark a people power revolution that would oust Marcos and catapult his mother Corazon to the presidency in February 1986.

* Aquino had lunch with close friends of his late father, 31 years after they left their house at 175 Commonwealth Avenue in Newtown.

After that, a mass was held at nearby St. Ignatius of Loyola church beside Boston College.

In behalf of his family, he thanked the couple Mario and Norma Bucal, spouses Steve (deceased) and Cheri Aguilar and the Buenaventuras, among others, who helped the Aquinos recover from the trauma of the senator’s assassination, and for the memorable years in exile as well.

“It was in Boston, thanks to all our friends, that my family was given a haven from the persecution of the dictatorship; it was here where we were given a sense of normalcy in what can only be described as abnormal times back home,” he said.

He said in Boston he got to wear many hats, including that of dog-handler, carpenter, plumber, baggage-carrier, mechanic, driver, et cetera – and expressed gratefulness for being afforded a semblance of normalcy.

Aquino also recalled how the Boston Globe reported then that it was “one of the coldest conditions and heaviest snowfall in decades,” and he was forced to sleep in thermal underwear and a tracksuit.

He put this in a “sleeping bag under various blankets and sheets, and which I topped with a comforter. I learned to take a shower in two minutes flat, using ice-cold water in the dead of winter after hot water ran out,” he said.

Remembering martial law

Aquino also recalled the abnormal times they experienced then, even before his father was forced to leave Manila to undergo a heart bypass operation in Dallas.

“Every aspect of life was controlled there by the dictator, and unless you belonged to the favored few, you had limited rights,” he said, citing the curfew, the travel abroad requiring official permission and the absence of free speech and freedom of assembly.

He even shared one anecdote that his father told him, about a director of the mental hospital whom Marcos promoted after he instructed all of the patients to clap their hands, stomp their feet and cheer loudly as soon as they saw the dictator.

But Marcos was surprised when only one person refused to join what the crowd did.

“So he asked: ‘Mr. Director, who is that person over there?’ To which the director responds, ‘Mr. President, please excuse him. That person has been cured and is on his way home, he is not a patient in this mental institution anymore.’”

Tarlac victims seek help

Meanwhile, more than 300 Tarlac residents who were victims of martial law appealed on Sunday to the President to help them get justice for their hardships during martial law.

The martial law victims walked for 10 kilometers from Capas, Tarlac and held a simple program at a gate of Hacienda Luisita owned by the Cojuangco-Aquino clan in Tarlac City.

Their leader Edith de Guzman said they came from different parts of Tarlac province and hoped that the President can help them seek justice.

“He is from Tarlac, we are also Tarlaqueños. His parents were also victims of torture and judicial killing,” one of them said.

Belen Manzano, 84, said she was 55 years old when a soldier mishandled her and slapped her.

Manzano said she is still angry with the military enforcers but she had already forgiven them.

Eufracia Santos, 74, recounted how two trucks of soldiers ransacked her house and destroyed everything in 1976.

Santos said her brother Narciso Mallari, then 23 years old and a security guard at the Voice of America compound in Concepcion, Tarlac, was abducted.

She said she never heard from her brother again, and thinks he could have been killed by soldiers.

Luz Tamayo said she was 10 years old in 1972 when her father Eladio Estabillo was found dead in the river.

After the program of the martial law victims, members of Bayan Muna burned an effigy of President Aquino, Marcos and US President Barack Obama.

The demonstrators held placards that said: “Never again to martial law.”

Former Bayan Muna Rep. Satur Ocampo said President Aquino should watch his actions or else he might find himself doing what Marcos did.

Ocampo said that Aquino’s hint of extending his term could lead to another authoritarian regime.

He also joined the members of the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) and Anak Pawis in a demonstration at the Plaza Miranda in Manila to commemorate the 42nd anniversary of the declaration of martial law.

Bayan secretary-general Renato Reyes Jr. said the world and the Filipinos would not allow Aquino to seek a second term.

“He is delusional and a fool if he thinks there is a clamor for him to stay in office beyond 2016. Aquino is the problem. He cannot be the solution. He is no champion of change. He is a staunch defender of the corrupt status quo,” Reyes said. – With Evelyn Macairan, Ric Sapnu

Noy touts senators now in jail for corruption (The Philippine Star) | Updated September 23, 2014 - 12:00am 0 2 googleplus0 0


AQUINO

BOSTON - By sending powerful officials to jail, including a former president and three senators, the administration has shown its commitment to the “straight path,” President Aquino said yesterday in a speech at Boston College here.

“We used to think that the powerful and well-connected were beyond the long arm of the law. That is no longer the case. The straight and righteous path for these people will lead straight to jail,” Aquino told a crowd of mostly members of academe as well as US officials including Ambassador to the Philippines Philip Goldberg.

It was the first time that Aquino made public reference to the arrest of senators Juan Ponce Enrile, Jinggoy Estrada and Ramon Revilla Jr. as an achievement in his anti-corruption effort. The three are in detention for plunder in connection with the pork barrel scam.

“Since 2010, a chief justice was impeached for considering himself above the law, and is now facing charges in the regular courts. A former president and three incumbent senators are in detention, all of them facing charges of plunder,” he said.

Former President and now Pampanga congresswoman is under hospital arrest while on trial for plunder. The three senators are detained at the Philippine National Police (PNP) Custodial Center at Camp Crame.

In 2012, the Senate convened as an impeachment court found then Supreme Court chief justice Renato Corona guilty of betraying public trust for failing to disclose all his wealth in his statements of assets, liabilities and net worth or SALN.

Aquino also boasted of having steered the economy to sustainable growth after a “lost decade under the previous administration.”

From an average 4.3 percent “consumer-driven” growth during the Arroyo administration, the country’s economy in terms of gross democratic product (GDP) rose 7.2 percent under the current leadership, Aquino said.

“This is why, since taking office in 2010, we have worked to foster sustainability, by rebalancing our economy towards investments,” he told his Boston College audience.

“The good news is that capital is indeed coming in at an unprecedented rate,” he said.

“Forty-two percent of all approved investments by our PEZA (Philippine Export Zone Authority) came only within the four years of our administration, while the other 58 percent took 15 years to accumulate,” he pointed out.

“Since 2010, our economy has been growing at an average of 6.3 percent, and last year, we posted an economic growth of 7.2 percent, making us one of the fastest growing economies in the world,” Aquino added.

* He also mentioned the Philippines’ 33-place jump from 85th in 2010 to 52nd in 2014 in the World Economic Forum Competitiveness Report touted as the “biggest improvement by any country in that timeframe.”

“The three major credit ratings agencies Fitch, Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s also upgraded us to investment grade in 2013, with continuously positive evaluations coming at a time of conservatism from ratings agencies, in response to a turbulent global economy,” he said.

Checkup

Meanwhile, Estrada is set to undergo a medical checkup tomorrow at the Cardinal Santos Medical Center in San Juan.

The Sandiganbayan granted his request yesterday that he be allowed to undergo magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to determine what was causing his shoulder pains.

“I am experiencing pain on my left shoulder. Actually in both shoulders,” Estrada said in an interview after his bail hearing at the anti-graft court’s Fifth Division.

He said he has been feeling such pain since last year but it appears to have worsened since his detention .

“But don’t worry, it will only take two to three hours. I would like to thank the members of the prosecution panel for not opposing my going to the hospital. And I would also like to thank the court for granting such request,” he told reporters.

Estrada said he wants the procedure done at the CSMC because there is no equipment available at the PNP General Hospital, which is also within Camp Crame.

He said the CSMC, where he underwent a similar checkup before, is also nearer to his detention facility than any other hospital.

“It’s already radiating in my neck,” he said, describing the pain, adding that he just wants to have it checked and hopefully rule out anything serious.

He also accused pork barrel scam main whistle-blower Benhur Luy of lying in his testimony during direct examination.

“He’s a liar. There were many inconsistencies in Benhur’s testimony,” he said, referring to how the prosecution witness had accused the senator of signing an endorsement letter at a party and how middlemen reportedly received kickbacks on his behalf.

“I never knew him up to this date. How can he let me sign a document in a party? I never sign any documents during a party. Maybe that’s not the appropriate time for me to sign any document,” he stressed.

Estrada also said Luy’s testimony that actor Mat Ranillo, Pauline Labayen and Ruby Tuason had transacted with alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles for him is not true.

“First of all, I don’t know Mat, I never dealt with him much less Ruby Tuason,” he said.

“That’s why I am waiting for Ruby Tuason to be placed on the witness stand,” he said.

“I’ve never transacted with Mrs. Napoles. If Benhur Luy was insinuating that I was transacting with Mrs. Napoles about commissions that’s not true,” he added.

He said he expected to see Luy’s alleged lies exposed in a cross-examination.

Sense of propriety lost

As Aquino was proudly declaring his anti-corruption achievements abroad, the opposition United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) was lamenting what it called the Senate Blue Ribbon committee’s loss of its sense of propriety with the suspension of its investigation into the Malampaya Fund and Globe Asiatique.

“Actually, I find the cancellation of these vital investigations troubling and hard to understand. If the issue concerns the administration, all kinds of excuses will be made up to prevent hearing these, while if it concerns the critics…” UNA secretary-general Toby Tiangco said yesterday.

The Blue Ribbon committee headed by Sen. Teofisto Guingona III announced over the weekend the postponement of the probe, noting that Commission on Audit Chairman Grace Pulido-Tan and special audit team leader Susan Garcia could not make it to the Sept. 25 hearing because they were on official business trip.

“Are the resource persons from the Commission on Audit (COA) the only invited guests to determine the truth about the anomaly in Malampaya?

“The Senate has lost all sense of propriety. They should stop pretending. Their priority is political demolition against Vice President Jejomar Binay. They don’t care about important issues like the Malampaya Fund anomaly and the misuse of Pag-Ibig fund,” Tiangco said.

He said the senators were employing “delaying tactics to bury the issues” on the Malampaya Fund and Globe Asiatique.

“They must now be called the ‘Senate Yellow Ribbon committee,’ whose primary goal is to protect the LP (Liberal Party) and its allies and demolish the opposition,” Tiangco said.

Help from civil society

For Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas II, civil society groups should help in the monitoring of the use of public funds by officials.

Roxas made the appeal during the regional launching of the Koalisyon ng Mamamayan para sa Reporma (KOMPRe) at the De La Salle University Science Institute Campus in Bacoor, Cavite.

He explained that the national government allots a total of P20 billion for local government projects through the Grassroots Participatory Process (GPP).

Roxas said the amount is divided among the 1,600 local government units P30 million for each city and P12 million for each municipality.

“You’re the boss, you choose your projects and we fund those projects,” he said.

He said civil society groups and the public should pay more attention to project details and expenses. Michael Pinongbayan, Cecille Suerte Felipe, Jose Rodel Clapano

Aquino dares critics: Charge my dishonest allies (philstar.com) | Updated September 23, 2014 - 2:52pm 8 70 googleplus0 0


President Aquino converses with Budget Secretary Florencio Abad, one of his allies hounded by corruption allegations. Malacañang Photo Bureau/Rey Baniquet

MANILA, Philippines - President Benigno Aquino III is challenging critics to file cases against his allies who have been perceived to be corrupt.

"The courts are open. If they think that I have dishonest people around me, then all they have to do is file an appropriate case," Aquino responded to a question in a forum at Harvard University.

Aquino said the Office of the Ombudsman will even investigate unsigned or anonymous complaints just "to ferret out those who are not treading the correct path."

The president's remarks came after a consumers' group filed plunder and graft charges against Philippine National Police chief Director General Alan Purisima for allegedly amassing ill-gotten wealth.

Purisima, one of the officials known to be close to the Aquinos, has been accused of hiding the true value of his alleged mansion in Nueva Ecija and receiving bribes for the construction of another mansion inside Camp Crame.

Another Aquino ally, Budget Secretary Florencio Abad, also remains hounded by corruption allegations after the Disbursement Acceleration Program he crafted was declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.

Abad was also implicated in the pork barrel scam by businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles herself, the central figure in the controversy.

In his policy speech in Harvard and during his trip to Europe, Aquino trumpeted the detention of allegedly corrupt officials including former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and Sens. Juan Ponce Enrile, Jinggoy Estrada and Ramon Revilla Jr. -Louis Bacani

FROM THE INQUIRER

LP execs, LP solons in top 10 list of DAP beneficiariesBy Marc Jayson Cayabyab |INQUIRER.net5:55 pm | Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014


DOTC Sec. Joseph Emilio Abaya. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines – An opposition congressman on Tuesday bared a list of Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) beneficiaries in Congress.

United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) Secretary General and Navotas Rep. Toby Tiangco e-mailed the list of the top DAP beneficiaries, of which the top 10 belonged to President Benigno Aquino III’s Liberal Party.

The top two recipients are LP high ranking officials – former Cavite lawmaker now Transportation Secretary and LP Acting President Joseph Abaya, and LP Vice Chair and Speaker Feliciano Belmonte, Jr.

Tiangco is not part of his list of DAP beneficiaries.

The list:
– Abaya – P408 million
– Belmonte – P297.487 million
– Majority leader Neptali Gonzales II – P263 million
– Former Cavite Rep. Ayong Maliksi – P217.894 million
– Former An Waray Rep. Florencio “Bem” Noel – P179,500 million
– Batanes Rep Henedina Abad – P176.619 million
– Former Laguna Rep. Edgar San Luis – P160.209 million
– Former Cebu Rep. Tomas Osmeña – P124,124 million
– Former Quezon Rep. Lorenzo “Erin” Tañada III – P120.581 million
– Batangas Rep. Nelson Collantes – P110 million

Batanes Rep. Henedina Abad, a Deputy Speaker, is the wife of Department of Budget and Management (DBM) Secretary Florencio Abad, the brainchild of DAP, known as an economic stimulus package.

Meanwhile, Noel is the independent mayoral bet in Tacloban who lost to Alfred Romualdez, the nephew of Ilocos Rep. and former first lady Imelda Marcos. Noel was endorsed by President Aquino and his sister celebrity host Kris Aquino.

Though not part of the top 10, other LP officials also received DAP funds – LP Secretary General Western Samar Rep. Mel Senen Sarmiento (P15 million), LP Parliamentary Caucus Deputy Chair for Visayas, Iloilo City Rep. Jerry Treñas (P14 million).

All Deputy Speakers were also given DAP funds – Abad, Isabela Rep. Giorgidi Aggabao (P10 million), Leyte Rep. Sergio Apostol (P8.7 million), Lanao Del Sur Rep. Pangalian Balindong (P45 million), Nueva Vizcaya Rep. Carlos Padilla (P18.87 million), and Antipolo Rep. Roberto Puno (P42.5 million).

* Some beneficiaries are known LP members who have committee vice/chairpersonships – Appropriations committee chair Davao Rep. Isidro Ungab (P80.25 million), National Defense and Security committee chair Muntinlupa Rep. Rodolfo Biazon (P61 million), Appropriations vice Chair Camarines Sur Rep. Rolando Andaya (P55 million), Appropriations vice Chair Quirino Rep. Dakila Cua (P50 million), Justice Committee chair Iloilo Rep. Niel Tupas (P49.559 million), Energy committee chair Oriental Mindoro Rep. Reynaldo Umali (P35 million), Ways and Means chair Marikina Rep. Romero Quimbo (P32 million), Housing and Urban Development chair Negros Occidental Rep. Alfredo Benitez (P10 million), Appropriations Vice chair Eastern Samar Rep. Ben Evardone (P10 million), Transportation chair Catanduanes Rep. Cesar Sarmiento (P10 million), Land Use committee chair Dinagat Islands Rep. Kaka Bag-ao (P10 million), and Constitutional amendments chair Davao City Rep. Mylene Albano (P2 million).

Only one member of the Makabayan bloc received the DAP funds – Bayan Muna Rep. Neri Colmenares (P10 million).

Meanwhile, the top 10 in the senators who were DAP recipients are:
-Teofisto Guingona III – P360.51 million
-Francis Pangilinan – P310.841 million
-Aquilino Pimentel III – P258.1 million
-Loren Legarda – P250 million
-Juan Ponce Enrile – P249 million
-Gringo Honasan – P238 million
-Francis Escudero – P235.5 million
-Ralph Recto – P233.17 million
-Vicente Sotto III – P214 million
-Franklin Drilon – P197.11 million

In a press conference on Tuesday, Gonzales said some congressmen did not know that the funds given to them came from DAP.

He said the stimulus package only got its name from Abad.

“Let me make it clear na yung DAP, walang nakakaalam sa amin na legislators na merong DAP (nobody knows from the legislators that there is such a thing as DAP). True, like any congressman for that matter, we initiate, propose projects sent to DBM and it’s the DBM that finds sources,” Gonzales said.

He said the lawmakers do not identify projects from the program, unlike the practice under the now defunct Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF), the congressional pork barrel that figured in a corruption scandal.

The alleged scam resulted in the detention of three senators, their aides and alleged mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles. The supreme Court scrapped PDAF at the height of the scandal.

“We’re not asking for projects out of DAP. There’s no such thing… DAP only became a name of a program that the DBM has been doing in the past. The problem here is it was called DAP,” na dati nang ginagawa ng DBM even in the past,” Gonzales added in Filipino.

In a text message, Belmonte said he was not aware that he received DAP funds.

“Not aware of it, or how accurate it is,” Belmonte said of Tiangco’s list.

He said he sometimes shares his DAP funds to other lawmakers.

“Of course, as Speaker I sometimes share with colleagues… for projects outside my district as Speaker,” Belmonte added.

The Supreme Court declared some practices under DAP unconstitutional. Senator Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada, who is detained over the pork barrel scam, had also bared in a privilege speech that funds from DAP were given as incentives to senators who voted to convict ousted Chief Justice Renato Corona.

Tiangco tried but failed to suspend the budget deliberations in the plenary due to the supposedly incomplete DAP report submitted to him by Abad.

Tiangco said his latest list is based on the DAP documents uploaded in the budget department’s website.

He said a total of P5.041 billion in DAP funds were given to representatives, while P3.785 billion to senators.


THE TRIBUNE

Aquino’s favored LGU execs also major DAP recipients Written by Alvin Murcia Thursday, 25 September 2014 00:00


In today’s budget hearing of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Escudero asked department officials on the particulars of its total BuB fund amounting to P5.7 billion.

As more details emerge on the use of the unconstitutional Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) based on documents the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) has been surrendering piece meal to Congress, 11 more local government unit (LGU) officials allied with President Aquino were revealed to have received millions in DAP funds aside from legislators with close links to the administration, the militant Bagong Alyansang Maka-bayan (Bayan) disclosed yesterday.

Bayan secretary general Renato Reyes Jr. said Aquino and Budget Secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad should be held accountable for lying for saying that DAP was not used similar to the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) or pork barrel.

Bayan named Aquino’s allies who received millions in DAP funds for their pet projects as Mayor Carmen Petilla – P237 million, Mayor Oscar Rodriguez- P154 million, Gov. Jericho Petilla – P118 million, Gov. Victor Tanco – P87 million, Gov. Oscar Moreno – P81.5 million, Mayor Rodrigo Duterte – P80 million, Arthur Defensor P79 million, Mayor Darlene Antonino Custodio – P73.5, Gov. Raul Daza – P70 million, Gov. Joey Salcedo – P55 million, Mayor Evenly Uy – P54 million, and Mayor Nani Braganza – P52 million.

These local officials were separate from those who also received DAP funds, namely, former Cavite Rep. now Transportation and Communications Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya who got P408 million; Speaker Feliciano “Sonny” Belmonte Jr. with P297.48 million; House Majority Leader Neptali Gonzales Jr. with P263 million; Cavite Rep. Erineo “Ayong” Maliksi with P217.89 million; former An Waray Rep. Florencio “Ben” Noel with P179.5 million; Batanes Rep. Henedina Abad with P176.61 million; former Laguna Rep. Edgar San Luis with P160.2 million; Tomas Osmeña-with P124.124 million; former Quezon Rep. Lorenzo “Erin” Tañada with P120.581 million and Batangas Rep. Nelson Collantes who got P110 million.

The senators that received big DAP funds were Senators Teofisto Guingona III, P360.51 million; Francis Pangilinan, P310.8 million; Aquilino Pimentel III, P258.1 million; Sen. Loren Legarda, P250 million; Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile, P249 million; Gringo Honasan, P238 million; Francis Escudero, P235.5 million; Ralph Recto, P233.2 million and Vicente Sotto III, P214 million.

Reyes said the fact that huge chunks of DAP went to lawmakers and their pet projects shows without doubt that DAP was used as pork.

He said most of those who received a big share from the DAP were allies of Aquino that proved DAP was indeed presidential pork used for patronage politics and it exposes the Aquino regime as corrupt, no different from past administrations.

* Reyes said he was not surprised that Abaya was hailed as the DAP top-notcher, supposedly receiving some P408 million in DAP projects since he was the chairman of the House appropriations committee at the time DAP was conceived in 2011.

Abaya was tasked with ensuring the passage of the Aquino budget in Congress. He may have colluded with Abad in ensuring that budget items were bloated, thereby ensuring a source of illegal “savings” that ended up as presidential pork, he said.

This also holds true with Rep. Abad, Reyes said because she was the wife of the budget secretary who was the one recommending DAP projects.

Reyes said it only shows what is wrong with DAP and the pork barrel funds since public funds should not be treated as a joint savings account by the said officials.

He cited the list of DBM showing that some lawmakers were also given projects outside their own districts, further raising questions as to the criteria of the selection of lawmakers and their so-called pet projects.

Likewise local government allies of Aquino also got huge portions of DAP. Topping local officials are Mayor Carmen Petilla and Governor Jericho Petilla of Leyte who got P237 million and P118 million respectively, based on the tally by the Computer Professionals Union.

Reyes said Pampanga Mayor Oscar Rodriguez also of LP got P154 million according to the initial tally, Governor Victor Tanco got at least P87 million in projects, followed by Gov. Oscar Moreno who got P81.5 million in projects. At least P2.2 billion in DAP were coursed through local government units.

It is undeniable. DAP was used as pork for lawmakers and local government officials. It was a favor for political allies.

It was dangled before politicians to ensure loyalty to the administration. As such, it stinks of corruption.

The militant group called for the full and complete accounting of DAP projects since huge items such as the P1.3 billion supposed agrarian reform community projects have not been detailed by the DBM.

The P1.8 billion DAP for the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process also has not been fully detailed by the DBM, some P240 million for so-called “civil society participation” has not been reported by the recipient agency according to the DBM.

Reyes said these are just some of the many DAP funded projects and programs that have not been accounted for, further highlighting the corruption of the Aquino government.

The bayan leader called on the Supreme Court to stand by its earlier decision declaring acts and issuances under DAP as illegal and junk the motion for reconsideration to put an end to the presidential pork.

The date released by United Nationalist Alliance spokesman Tobias Tiangco was flawed, House Majority Leader Mandaluyong Rep. Neptali Gonzales II said as he refuted Tiangco’s allegation that dis district has received P263-million worth of projects through DAP funds.

While admitting that some of his projects were funded from the DAP, Gonzales said that this was only P201-million.

“His data is incomplete and besides, I think it is full of errors. I, for one, I did not receive P263 million. I’m definite that it’s P201 million,” Gonzales told reporters in a chance interview.

Gonzales stressed, however, that he had no knowledge that his projects in Mandaluyong were funded from the DAP.

He said that his projects were not coursed through non-government organizations like that of the NGOs of Janet Lim Napoles.

“I have not given to any NGO, whether by (Janet Lim) Napoles or not. The LGU is the implementing agency [of the projects],” said Gonzales.

Gonzales maintained that it is not unusual for lawmakers to look for funds for projects in his or her district.

“You will propose projects out of your desire to serve your people and it would be up to the DBM to assess your projects. It’s up to the DBM where the source of funding will be,” the majority leader said.

Gonzales explained that of the P201-million given to the local government of Mandaluyong, P180-million was returned to the National Treasury as mandated by the Commission on Audit.

“The city has remitted back almost P180 million. I have the receipt. There were two remittances made. Presumably it was because of the DAP decision…[the Commission on Audit] said that the money should be returned and that’s what the city did,” he said.

The lawmaker pointed out that the recipients of the DAP funds were not only members of the Liberal Party but other political parties as well.

While hailing the bottom-up budget (BuB) as an excellent template in enlarging the share of local government units in the national budget, Senator Chiz Escudero, meanwhile, said the scheme should be rid of expensive riders that can be utilized to cover more towns or projects.

Escudero, who chairs of the Senate Committee on Finance, said that P840 million has been proposed in the 2015 national budget for the “monitoring and evaluation” of BuB projects.

The amount, Escudero explained, is on top of the P20.9 billion for a menu of projects ranging from classrooms to clinics, which were identified by local governments through a process involving citizens’ consultation, and brings real allocation for the BUB to P21.7 billion.

“I think, at the very least, we should reduce the monitoring budget. Then we add whatever amount slashed to the budget of the BuB proper. That way we can cover more towns or increase the funding for those already in,” he added.

According to Escudero, the Aquino administration’s BuB project, which was introduced in 2013, can be implemented without creating a monitoring industry.

Piloted last year, BuB has been officially renamed Grassroots Participatory Budgeting Process (GPBP) in the 2015 proposed spending plan. Under the program, funding for projects chosen by local government units (LGUs) is incorporated in the budgets of 11 participating national agencies. There is also a separate budget for monitoring.

In today’s budget hearing of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Escudero asked department officials on the particulars of its total BuB fund amounting to P5.7 billion.

Raps vs Purisima affect entire PNP, Aquino — Roxas Written by Tribune Wires Thursday, 25 September 2014 00:00


PURISIMA, AQUINO

Charges hounding Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Alan Purisima have taken their toll on not only the entire police organization but the presidency as well, Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas II yesterday admitted.

Roxas’ acknowledgment of the situation came amid the reaffirmation of trust and confidence of President Aquino on Purisima, even vouching for the latter’s good character amid graft and plunder charges filed against the PNP chief by some civic groups.

The DILG chief, in defending the agency’s proposed P104.5 billion for 2015 before the Senate committee on finance, found himself at the receiving end of senators’ grilling on the issues confronting Purisima whom Sen. Grace Poe said should consider taking a leave of absence pending the resolution of the case against him.

“We can’t deny that the PNP is affected, the entire PNP institution. Even the President is now being dragged, almost everybody, including me. That’s why it’s also good... and Purisima even said at the proper forum or once he returns, that he explains the issues raised against him,” Roxas told reporters in an interview after the hearing.

Documents presented before the committee chaired by Sen. Francis Escudero pertaining to the “renovation” of Purisima’s official residence in Camp Crame called the “White House” which were also submitted to Commission on Audit (CoA), however, raised more questions due to some notable conflicting entries information.

Submitted by PNP Director for comptrollership Police Director Rolando Purugganan, the absolute deed of donation entered into by the sponsors or donors of “White House” – Ulticon Builders’ Carlos Gonzales, lawyer Alexander Lopez for Pacific Concrete Corp. and Christopher Pastrana of CAPP Industries — it mentioned of a building to be given by them to the donee and not of a renovation of the said structure.

The document was executed only last Sept. 3, supposedly few days before the CoA supervising auditor for PNP Preciosa Miranda, attesting even that the project’s construction cost stood at only P11.4 million.

The issue first cropped up sometime last June, following claims made by some groups that the actual cost of renovation was P20 million and the reason given was the damage caused by Typhoon “Ondoy” which struck in 2009.

* While initially Roxas noted the same figure, he admitted before senators that it was the first time that he saw and been informed of the existence of the said document submitted to CoA last Sept. 12, a copy of which was handed over to him after he committed to submit to the panel documents pertaining to the said donation.

“The defense of Secretary Mar (Roxas) is nothing less heroic. But we accepted the fact that you will be able to answer this. Since this is an official structure, shouldn’t the PNP higher leadership be privy?” Escudero asked as he seconded Poe in inquiring the DILG chief of the whereabouts of Purisima.

“We actually have a document. It’s the first time that I see it.

“This has been submitted to the CoA auditor in Crame written by police director in charge of the comptrollership Rolando Purugganan. Basically what it says is consistent with available documents related to the transaction we have properly recognized the receipt of donations,” Roxas was quoted saying in the hearing.

The senators were told that Purisima is currently in Colombia attending an anti-crime conference and will be back to the country few days from now.

Roxas, when asked by Poe on what possible recommendation will be made concerning the issues on Purisima, said the matter is likely to be discussed when the President returns home from his foreign trips.
Angie M. Rosales and Joshua Labonera

FROM THE MANILA TIMES

An immature president September 28, 2014 8:36 pm by ERWIN TULFO


Erwin Tulfo


Some say being vengeful is a sign of immaturity since one can’t simply forgive and forget what others have done.
Worse, some of these unforgiving individuals, though not directly at the receiving end of such transgressions, never cease in persecuting those individuals or groups at fault.
PNoy, is a prime example of that unforgiving human being, who does not know when to stop, even though the offending party is already languishing in jail or in the process of paying for his or her sins, like former President Arroyo.
I am not a friend of Mrs. Arroyo, and I believe she deserves to be punished for her indiscretions while chief executive of the land.
However, I totally disagree with PNoy on his continued attacks on his predecessor, particularly in front of foreign leaders.
Blaming Arroyo and the former officials of the past administration seems to be a common ingredient in almost all of President Aqiuno’s speeches here and abroad.
But hitting the former administration repeatedly will never bring back the loss precious time and billions of pesos that were stolen or squandered.
One wonders if Aquino gets any personal sense of fulfillment from endlessly lambasting the former President who is currently under hospital arrest?
Our 50 something year old President… has yet to grow up.
* * *
No emergency powers for PNoy
Finally, both houses of Congress have agreed on something so quickly…no emergency powers for PNoy, not just yet.
* The Department of Energy (DOE) failed to convince the House of Representatives that Pres. Aquino needs such an authority to address the impending power crisis.
Even some of his allies in Congress believe he may abuse this power to solve the energy problem but at a very costly price.
Both the Senate majority and the opposition block in Congress have earlier expressed unwillingness to grant Aquino emergency power.
They fear that Pres. Aquino might do a Pres. Ramos, purchasing expensive power barges to temporarily solve the rotating brownouts then at the huge expense of the peoples money. The barges were of no use.
Aquino and his sidekick at DOE should just drop the idea of having emergency powers
It was abused before, and it might be abused again. This administration has a record of abusing what it has in its hands, like the Disbursement Acceleration Program(DAP).
Tsk, tsk, tsk…


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

© Copyright, 2014 by PHILIPPINE HEADLINE NEWS ONLINE
All rights reserved


PHILIPPINE HEADLINE NEWS ONLINE [PHNO] WEBSITE