Why the Senate decided to probe pork scam

Posted at Aug 21 2013 05:21 PM | Updated as of Aug 22 2013 01:21 AM

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MANILA - What convinced the Senate to investigate the P10 billion pork barrel scam?

According to Senate President Franklin Drilon, the Upper Chamber decided to defer its own investigation on the scam until there was more evidence to warrant a Senate inquiry in aid of legislation.

He said the Commission on Audit report that showed the alleged misuse of billions of pesos in pork barrel funds prompted them to start the probe.

"Kung naaalala niyo, nuong umpisa ayaw naming makialam at ibig naming suportahan muna yung gumagawa ng imbestigasyon," he told radio dzMM.

"Ngayon lumabas na ang report ng COA at sa aming tingin ay siguro kailangan naming buksan ang imbestigasyon tutal meron ng findings ang COA. Kaya ang aming in aid of legislatioon titignan natin kung ano ang maaaring magawa para hindi na mauulit ang findings ng COA," he added.

Drilon said the Senate inquiry to be conducted by the Senate Blue Ribbon committee will focus on alleged unliquidated expenditures as well as the fake non-government organizations linked to businesswoman Janet Lim Napoles. The senator said it is the implementing agency and the one tasked by the agency to implement the project that should liquidate the funds.

He said the probe will also allow lawmakers, including fellow senators mentioned in the COA report, to air their side.

"Wala po kaming kapangyarihan na i-summon ang isang senador o congressman. Nasa sa kanila po yan kung sa kanilang sarili ay gusto nilang magpaliwanag, it will be most welcome. They can attend, wala naman pong bawal diyan dahil it's a public hearing," he said.

Radio DZMM, August 21, 2013