MANILA - Former Commission on Elections chairman Andres Bautista on Friday belied claims he skipped a Senate investigation this week into his alleged money laundering activities because he was in hiding.
"To clarify, I was not aware of the scheduled hearings as I never received any invitation for the purpose of aiding the committee as one of its resource persons," Bautista said in a statement.
"I was only made aware of the hearing while I was browsing through the news online," he said.
Sen. Francis Escudero, who led the investigation, said the former Comelec chief would be subpoenaed after he failed to attend the hearing of the committee on banks.
"I had not received any notice to such effect. Therefore to say that I refused to attend the hearing or that I am in hiding is untrue," Bautista said.
Bautista said he left the country on Nov. 21 to "explore consultancy opportunities" and "renew professional acquaintances with former colleagues from international law firms."
"I am still currently abroad for a medical check-up and a long overdue sabbatical," he said.
Bautista announced his resignation in October after his estranged wife, Patricia, accused him of amassing around P1 billion in unexplained wealth.
The House of Representatives impeached Bautista even after he resigned.