Saturday, May 20, 2017

Ex-lawmaker claims Napoles told him ex-PNoy got 'pork' commissions too

A former lawmaker on Saturday alleged that suspected pork barrel mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles had told him that former President Benigno Aquino III got "commissions" from her.

"I had a chance to speak with Napoles long before this PDAF paper came about, sometime in the early part of 2010, where I had the chance to meet with Napoles and her lawyer, not Atty. [Stephen] David, another lawyer then... In front of his lawyer, Napoles told me that Noynoy Aquino was getting commission from her," former Negros Orietal representative and Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption member Jacinto "Jing" Paras said in a forum in Quezon City.

Paras said Napoles divulged the information during a "casual" conversation in a restaurant that he formerly operates in Pasig City.

The former congressman indicated that the conversation took place before the 2010 presidential election.

"While we are having lunch, nagkaroon kami ng konting chat. In the course of our casual conversation tinanong ko siya, sabi ko Jenny (Napoles), 'Sino bang susuportahan mo ngayong coming election kasi malapit na?' Sabi niya, 'Kay Manny Villar ako e'... 'bakit ayaw mo ba kay Noynoy (Aquino) kasi he's gaining ground?' Sabi niya, 'Sir, ano 'yan e nangongomisyon sa'kin," the former lawmaker alleged.

Paras also called on Napoles to include the information in the Department of Justice's planned reinvestigation of the multi-billion pork barrel scam.

Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II had said that the government will tap Napoles as a state witness in the new pork scam cases that will be filed based on results of the reinvestigation.

"If she eventually becomes a state witness pakiusap ko lang sa kanya na sabihin ang katotohan. Kung 'yung sinabi niya sa akin kung 'yon ang katotohanan, I hope she reiterates that when she becomes a state witness," Paras said.

Shortly after Napoles was acquitted from the serious illegal detention case involving her former aide Benhur Luy, Aguirre met her lawyers to explore the possibility of using her as a state witness in the pork barrel scam case.

Napoles' laywer Stephen David, who was also in the same forum, declined to confirm Paras' claim, but said the former congressman is a "credible guy."

"Kahit may sinabi (si Napoles), you know mayroong lawyer-client privilege so hindi ko pwedeng i-divulge 'yan."

"We should believe him (Paras)... What I am confirming is the credibility ng kaibigan natin," David said.

Aquino's spokesperson Abigail Valte said that the allegation was "preposterous."

"Some quarters will do anything to associate the former President with Janet Napoles. So far, no one has been able to prove anything, only pointing fingers," Valte said. 

Source: GMA News Online


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