Says he will fight his cases in Sandiganbayan, SC
MANILA - Senator Jinggoy Estrada is pinning his hopes of getting justice from the Supreme Court and Sandiganbayan after allegedly getting “selective accusations" from several quarters who want him in jail.
In a speech before the Senate adjourned on Wednesday, Estrada insisted he did not get a single centavo from public coffers.
He said he will prove his innocence once the cases move to the higher courts.
In front of family members and friends who were at the Senate gallery, he said: “I am not afraid to go to jail. They don’t need to drag me to jail. I will voluntarily surrender once a warrant is issued.”
He told his father, former Joseph Estrada, and mother, former Senator Loi Estrada: “Don’t worry about me, I can do this.”
To his siblings, he said: “Thank you for your understanding.”
To his wife Precy, he said: “I am sorry for all the hurt I’ve brought you. I hope you will remain strong for our kids.”
He said they will soon celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary. “I would have loved to marry you again in church, but that would nearly be impossible. But I will marry you even if I were in jail.”
To his kids, Estrada reminded them to be humble and remain proud of the family name.
WHERE'S THE PLUNDER?
Estrada described as a “speedy convicting court” the Office of the Ombudsman after it filed a plunder case which, he said, lacked the necessary element to pin him down.
“For a plunder complaint to stand, the accused should have allegedly diverted P50 million or so. I did not get a single centavo,” he said.
He said the testimonies of government’s witnesses lacked important elements. “[Former Estrada social secretary] Ruby Tuason said she does not even know how much businesswoman Janet Napoles was supposedly giving me.”
Tuason earlier testified that the kickbacks were inside a duffel bag that she brought to the Senate.
Estrada showed a picture of Tuason’s supposed visit to the Senate, but it did not show her with a duffel bag.
“It’s not money, but food was brought. Most often than not, those were sandwiches,” he said.
He said the ledgers of whistleblower Benhur Luy “when summed up, the amount does not even total P50 million. Some of his allegations were even hearsay.”
He said the small hope he had in Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales’ sense of justice was dashed when the latter issued statements to the media declaring him and his opposition colleagues, Senators Juan Ponce Enrile and Bong Revilla, already guilty.
Estrada said this “selective accusation” was not the act alone of Morales but also of other institutions: from the media, Commission on Audit, Department of Justice, up to the Senate itself.
On the newspaper that brandished his name and his 2 accused colleagues, Estrada noted the newspaper already had in its possession the Luy accounts since April last year. The accounts showed many names, including administration officials and allies such as Budget Secretary Butch Abad, but “the newspaper chose only to pinpoint Enrile, Revilla, and Estrada.”
On the COA, Estrada noted the “well-rehearsed script” of COA Chairman Grace Pulido Tan. “Again, only three names were repeatedly said even if the report named others.”
On the DOJ, Estrada said his constitutional rights were stepped on by this department many times.
On his administration colleagues in the Senate, he said, “I expected the same demeanor [I have practiced in the past] from them, but I did not.”