MANILA – Senator Antonio Trillanes IV suspects that alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim Napoles is hoping to turn the tide come 2016, when her supposed bet for president wins.
Speaking to ABS-CBN News' "Umagang Kay Ganda," Trillanes said he believes Napoles will not spill the beans anytime soon and may be waiting for the outcome of the 2016 presidential polls before making her next move.
Trillanes said Napoles is careful in mentioning individuals whom she supposedly had transactions with, as there is a possibility that these people or their allies might retain power in 2016.
"Hindi magsasalita iyan dahil tataya iyan sa magiging susunod na presidente ng Pilipinas para mamasahe ang kanilang mga kaso, o mabigyan muna ng pyansa tapos para kinalaunan makakalimutan ng kababayan natin, mawawala na lang yan," Trillanes said.
"Sa tingin ko kasi ang nakikita nila is malapit na itong eleksyon eh. Kung magtitiis siya, maaari kung mananalo ang kanyang manok, eh mamamasahe ang kaso niya. Kung magsasalita siya ngayon, marami siyang makakaaway na baka ito ang mga naka-pwesto sa susunod. So kailangan masigurado niya muna. Ngayon, kung matatalo ang manok niya sa 2016 malamang magsasalita na iyan."
Pressed to name the person he believes is Napoles' presidential bet, Trillanes said: "Alam na siguro natin iyan kung sino."
Napoles, Senators Jinggoy Estrada, Juan Ponce Enrile and Ramon "Bong" Revilla Jr., and 34 other individuals are facing plunder charges over the alleged misuse of an estimated P10 billion worth of Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) or "pork barrel."
The businesswoman is accused of setting up fake non-government organizations where legislators allegedly funneled their respective PDAFs to get kickbacks.
So far, only Vice President Jejomar Binay of the United Nationalist Alliance has declared intention to run for president. Binay is a known ally of Estrada and Enrile, two of the lawmakers at the center of the scam.
No special treatment
Trillanes also said he is against putting Napoles under hospital arrest, amid reports that the businesswoman has an ovarian tumor.
The senator said he is not against giving Napoles the chance to seek medical attention, but he argued that putting the businesswoman to under hospital arrest would not be acceptable.
"Of course sasabihin natin bahala na ang korte, pero kailangan tingnan muna natin: 'Is that an emergency case?' Kung talagang kailangan operahan, hindi pwedeng nandoon ka na lang palagi after maka-recover ka, na doon ka made-detain. Kailangan mga isang linggo, dalawang lniggo, balik ka na ulit dapat," he said.
Trillanes believes that the public would be outraged if the court grants Napoles' petition to be placed under hospital arrest.
The senator said public opinion is very much against Napoles, especially that the latter continues to remain mum about the scam.
"Hindi magandang ipapakita na may special treatment. Ito na nga, husga na ng mga kababayan natin eh kontrabida itong si Mrs. Napoles, tapos lantaran pang bibigyan ng special treatment. Maraming magagalit niyan na kababayan natin," he said.
"Kung magsasabi siya ng totoo, at kumbaga magre-repent siya, babawi siya, isosoli niya ang mga nakuha niya through illegal means, eh baka maawa ang mga kababayan natin niyan. Pero sa ganitong sitwasyon na nagmamatigas siya na parang wala siyang ginawang mali, wala talaga siyang makukuhang simpatya."