Info came from 'foreign government,' Duterte claims
MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday claimed that Senator Antonio Trillanes IV shares his alleged offshore bank accounts with a Chinese national.
The President alleged that since Trillanes was holding the accounts jointly with a foreign individual, it would be hard scrutinize these.
“Si Trillanes, he thinks people are ignorant. Iyung lahat ng joint account niya may partner siya na Chinese,” Duterte said.
“Even if he signs a waiver, if the co-signer does not, walang mangyari. The bank will never name who is the partner.”
Duterte said he came across the information because it was supplied by a “foreign government.”
He cited efforts against money laundering and terrorism funding as reasons why he stumbled upon the supposed information against the senator.
“I think if I were not the president, I won’t be able to get that,” he said.
Duterte over the weekend said he will release records of Trillanes' bank deposits abroad.
He also vowed to “destroy” the senator. Records of Trillanes’ supposed bank accounts then surfaced online.
The senator readily faced the accusation, signing a waiver for all his bank accounts and daring the President to do the same.
Trillanes is accusing Duterte of not declaring P211 million in a savings account at the Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI). [LINK: not declaring BPI mum on Trillanes' claim vs Duterte ]
Responding to Trillanes’ challenge, Duterte said he has already issued a waiver before the 2016 Presidential elections.
The document Duterte was referring to was the special power of attorney allowing his then election lawyer, now Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo, to request from BPI bank certificates that would show that “at no time since the opening of the aforesaid Bank Account was there a deposit singly or collectively of P211 million.”
But the senator said this is not the document he is seeking from Duterte. He said he wants a waiver that would allow the bank to divulge detailed transactions on the President’s bank account.
Duterte, however, said Trillanes should not be asking him to release such an authorization.
“If Trillanes wants to find something, a fault in me, tell him go somewhere else and fly a kite… If you want to find evidence, don’t get it from my mouth,” the President said.
Aside from the alleged hidden wealth of the senator, Duterte also accused Trillanes of being involved in an anomaly in the use of the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP), a spending mechanism during the time of then-President Benigno Aquino III which was declared as illegal by the Supreme Court.
Trillanes has yet to comment on Duterte's latest allegations.