MANILA - Pharmally executive Linconn Ong on Friday disowned the statement of his lawyer against Senator Risa Hontiveros, after his legal counsel said the senator "should put a sock on her mouth."
Ong, who is detained in the Senate's premises in Pasay City, said he would not disrespect the Blue Ribbon Committee.
Hontiveros has criticized Ong's lawyer, Ferdinand Topacio, and showed to the Senate panel an ANC quote card which read: "She should walk the talk and file a complaint before the BIR as an informant if she has a case against the Darganis, otherwise she should put a sock in her mouth."
But Ong did not like this.
"He represents me and then I heard those verbal...I just wanna say that all those things he said... I will never do something to disrespect this committee, the senators," Ong said.
Hontiveros welcomed Ong's statement.
Topacio earlier accused the senator of bribing witnesses in the marathon Senate hearings.
Senate Blue Ribbon Committee Chairman Richard Gordon said they caught a smuggled phone in Ong's headquarters in the Senate compound.
"We get reports... and they are allowed to use the phone of the OSAA. This just shows how... imaginative and innovative this guy could be... It was found in his room," Gordon explained.
Ong apologized for his act but explained that he just misses his family.
"I'd like to apologize to the Senate, to the OSAA. It was out of survival instinct because I really miss my family, I want to communicate with them," the Pharmally official said.
Gordon, however, clarified to Ong that he could communicate with his family "within reasonable hours" that was instructed to him.
He also added that the act was unnecessary.
"If you keep doing illegal acts... it's something that goes against you," the senator said.
Ong was cited in contempt after senators found him being evasive in answering questions.
Pharmally Pharmaceutical Corp is facing investigation after it cornered P8.5 billion in contracts with the Department of Budget and Management's Procurement Service (PS-DBM) between April and June 2020 despite having only P625,000 in capital.
Some senators suspect Pharmally was favored by government because of its links with Yang. They also alleged the items it sold to government were overpriced.
President Rodrigo Duterte denied there was overpricing and said the deals were above board.