Senate can compel de Lima to disclose Napoles list

by Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 05 2014 09:17 PM | Updated as of May 06 2014 05:17 AM

- Estrada, Revilla: Let the list out

- Accused lawmakers won't resign

- Napoles urged: Come back to Senate

MANILA - The Senate Blue Ribbon committee has the power to compel Justice Secretary Leila de Lima to produce the list supposedly containing the names of other lawmakers who received pork barrel scam kickbacks.

Senate President Franklin Drilon said if the Blue Ribbon committee decides to reopen to investigation and calls back Secretary de Lima, "the committee and any Senate committee has the power to compel the production of documents."

"So that is part of the power of the Senate in order that we can elicit information from our resource persons,” Drilon told reporters.

The senator denied allegations that he pocketed kickbacks as well and that he wants to "silence" Sandra Cam who also reportedly has a copy of the list.

He denied knowing an Alex Almario, said to be a Department of Agrarian Reform assistant secretary and Liberal Party member who had allegedly wanted to see Cam.

"I don't want to dignify the allegations of Sandra Cam. I would rather let her do her thing. I don't know what she is talking about. I don't want to dignify her statements with any response," Drilon said.

He also said he does not know Almario.


Senators Jinggoy Estrada and Bong Revilla, who are facing charges for their alleged links to the scam, are suspicious of the refusal of the administration to disclose Napoles' list.

Estrada hinted that some people on the list are being protected.

"Noong kami, madalian. E itong mga iba, itong mga kasama 'yata sa listahan, mukhang inerase-erase," Estrada told reporters.

Revilla also wants the list to come out.

"Para lumabas ang katotohanan, e di dapat ilabas dahil pinakita na nila 'yan e. Sinabi na nila 'yan. So might as well show it to the people, tell the people the truth. The truth should come out, dapat malaman ng sambayanan kung ano talaga," Revilla told reporters.

"Makikita natin na talagang political persecution ang talagang focus sa aming tatlo. Just hope na kung ano ang katotohanan, lumabas. Let's hope and pray, sama-sama nating ipagdasal ito na lumabas na ang katotohanan dahil pagod na e," he added.

Enrile, Bong, Jinggoy reject resign call

Senator Juan Ponce Enrile, one of the senators already named by the Office of the Ombudsman, is unperturbed by news of Napoles' alleged list.

"Doesn't matter to me, whether they have a list or no list. Pareho lang," he said.

He also said he will not resign his post. This is the first time he reacted to calls for his resignation.

Estrada and Revilla earlier said they will not resign.

"Why are they judging us? We haven’t been tried. How do they know that we are guilty?" Enrile said.

Added Revilla: "Siguro hintayin na lang natin kung guilty na kami talaga."

"Alam niyo, simula't sapul, noong una pa lang, kumbaga sinabi na natin kung ano ‘yung nasa loob natin. Pinaubaya ko na lahat ‘to sa Panginoon. Kung anuman ang maging hatol sa atin, I will accept. Basta ang hiling ko lang sa lahat, ‘yung trial by publicity, please. Maawa naman kayo sa pamilya namin.”

Estrada belittled the online petition for them to resign, comparing the number of signatories to the votes he garnered in the last elections.

"There were 18 million Filipinos who voted for me to office and I cannot abandon them," he said.

Senate Majority Floor Leader Alan Peter Cayetano urged Napoles to come back to the Senate and tell all.

“Ang message ko kay Mrs. Napoles, just do it. Kasi parang napapaikot tayo nang kaunti ni Miss Napoles. Hindi ko alam kung ano ang schemes and scam niya. For me, definitely, mayroon pa ring pumo-protekta kay Mrs. Napoles kasi bakit ngayon wala pa rin siya sa ordinary jail? Bakit ganoon pa rin ang treatment sa kanya?”