MANILA (UPDATE)- President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday said an impeachment complaint against Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales will soon be filed, asserting that her office had "illegally obtained" documents on his and his family's bank accounts.
“We will file an impeachment case against her and I will tend to believe she is part of conspiracy,” Duterte told reporters.
Morales’ office recently said it has started looking into the wealth of the President and his family, and that it was coordinating with the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC).
Overall Deputy Ombudsman Melchor Arthur Carandang said the Duterte family’s transactions in different banks between 2006 and 2016 amount to hundreds of millions of pesos. He, however, clarified that it was hard to say how much the deposits were in total, since money went in and out of the accounts.
The AMLC, however, said it has not released any report to the Ombudsman as it has yet to evaluate its request for an investigation of the President's and his family's bank accounts.
“Ang AMLC says wala sila. Naghugas ng kamay. So saan mo kinuha because the only source is AMLC?” Duterte said.
Duterte said Trillanes obtained the supposed bank records from a woman from the AMLC with the surname Abad, who he said was the senator’s mistress.
The President said he could not recall Abad’s first name. But a certain Julia Bacay-Abad served as AMLC executive director and resigned earlier this year amid the President's criticism.
The President said Trillanes then gave the records to Carandang and Deputy Ombudsman for Mindanao Rodolfo Elman.
Duterte added that even if the supposed bank documents were authentic, these could not be used in court because they were illegally obtained.
He also noted that the computation of his supposed bank transactions were erroneous, which is why it ran into hundreds of millions.
In response, Trillanes called Duterte's allegations an "invented story" and lamented that someone else was dragged into the issue.
"I categorically deny itong huling imbentong storya ni Duterte. Nakakalungkot lang na meron pang nadadamay na ibang tao. In this case, si Atty. Julia Bacay-Abad na kilala bilang isang disente at pamilyadong tao na naging propesyonal sa kaniyang paglingkod bilang Executive Director ng AMLC," Trillanes said.
"Mr. Duterte, 'wag mong daanin sa kabastusan ang pag-iwas mo sa tunay na isyu ng bilyon-bilyong pera mo sa bangko," he added.
Duterte has said he would not submit himself to the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction, insisting that his wealth does not exceed P40 million. He said he is willing to step down if proven to be lying about his wealth.
“In the end, they will discover to their sorrow there is no such amount,” he said.
“Sabi ko kagabi sa AFP-PNP command conference, if you think that I’m lying - tutal generals kayo may kaibigan kayo diyan - punta kayo AMLC sa opisina, pindutin ninyo ‘yung computer and if you see billions in my account, kindly, most kindly please, oust me tomorrow,” Duterte said.
Duterte, meanwhile, said he has no idea about Trillanes’ allegation that Malacañang paid P10 million to a certain Daniel "Snooky" Cruz for information on the lawmaker's alleged bank accounts, including one at the Development Bank of Singapore (DBS).
Trillanes earlier proved that the account does not exist.
“Wala akong - ang kilala kong Snooky 'yung artista at 'yung comics, sa totoo lang,” he said, probably referring to actress Snooky Serna and comic strip character Snoopy.
“I will not spend a single centavo for it.”
DUTERTE EYES ANOTHER IMPEACH RAP VS SERENO
Duterte also said he is inclined to file another impeachment complaint against Supreme Court Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno for her alleged failure to disclose some of her earnings and for her "lavish" lifestyle at the expense of the government.
“Kay Sereno, wala kaming dynamics. Wala nga akong galit. Hindi naman nag-atake but the problem is the law should apply to all,” Duterte said.
Sereno is already facing impeachment proceedings at the House of Representatives based on the complaint of lawyer Lorenzo Gadon, who accused her of, among others, failing to make truthful declarations in her statement of assets, liabilities and net worth.
The President, meanwhile, dismissed criticism that he was attacking independent institutions by supporting cases against Morales and Sereno.
“I did not start this ruckus. Tahimik ako. Ang problema, nagpadamay sila kay Trillanes. It’s Trillanes who will bring this government or this country down to the dogs,” he said.