MANILA - Malacañang on Thursday said the proposal to abolish the government body tasked to run after ill-gotten wealth of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos is not an attempt to revise history, as earlier claimed by Sen. Bam Aquino.
The House of Representatives recently passed on third and final reading a bill abolishing the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG), formed during the time of the late president Corazon Aquino, the senator's aunt.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque dismissed criticism that efforts at recovering the Marcoses' ill-gotten wealth may be jeopardized as the PCGG’s functions would be transferred to the office of Solicitor General Jose Calida, a known Marcos supporter.
“I don’t think [there is historical revisionism]. Kasi iyong trabaho naman po ng PCGG ipagpapatuloy pa rin ng Office of the Solicitor General. At iyong mga kaso naman po na isinampa na base sa mga ebidensiyang nakalap ng PCGG, ang nagsasampa rin naman po ng mga kasong iyan ay Office of the Solicitor General din,” Roque said in a Palace press briefing.
(I don’t think there is historical revisionism. The work of the PCGG will still be pursued by the Office of the Solicitor General. And cases being filed based on the evidence gathered by the PCGG also emanate from the Office of the Solicitor General.)
“Eh ako naman po panatag ang loob ko na dedicated ang mga napakaraming abogado ng Office of the Solicitor General to do their job. Kahit sinong maging political appointee diyan, ang pagpapatakbo ng gobyerno ay nakasalalay sa mga rank-and-file workers,” he added.
(I am confident that the many dedicated lawyers working at the Office of the Solicitor General do their job. Whoever is the political appointee, running government still depends on rank-and-file workers.)
Roque added the plan to abolish the PCGG was meant to streamline the bureaucracy. Aside from the agency, House Bill No. 7376 will also transfer the functions and powers of the Office of the Government Corporate Counsel to the OSG.
He said the PCGG’s existence as a separate agency may no longer be needed as its operations were “winding up.”
Formed over three decades ago after the People Power revolution which toppled Marcos, the PCGG was tasked to recover around $10 billion looted by the dictator and his allies during his 20 years in power marked by massive corruption and abuse.
The agency has since recovered P170 billion or about $3.4 billion in ill-gotten wealth as well as jewelry, art, and other assets.