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Ninez Cacho-Olivares

On the verge of collapse

Saturday, 01 November 2014 00:00 Published in Commentary

Prosecutors and the Ombudsman are hard at work in portraying the plunder cases against the three opposition senators as very strong cases — strong enough at least to get the Sandiganbayan to deny the Senators Juan Ponce-Enrile, Jinggoy Estrada and Bong Revilla their petition for bail.
But no matter how much they try to project their case as strong, they certainly know that their case is on the verge of collapse, besides which, a lot of their manufactured allegations and so-called evidence and testimonies of their whistle-blowers are being bared publicly.
In the case of Senator Estrada, the Sandiganbayan Fifth Division allowed the bank accounts, travel documents, real and movable properties documents belonging to the prosecution “star witness” whistle-blower Benhur Luy, his mother Gertrudes, brother, and two co-whistle-blowers Merlina Sunas and Marina Sula, opened for scrutiny.
The Ombdusman, in a press conference said the decision will be challenged before the high court.
It is to be noted that there was fierce opposition from Luy and the prosecution to have these bared for scrutiny of the defense, with claims that Luy et al. are not the accused.
Perhaps so, but the fact is that it is now becoming clearer that it is they who probably pocketed the so-called kickbacks and commissions that they accuse the senatorrs of having received, but have no evidence at all for them to prove their charges, especially since these have been buttressed with lies, and coached testimonies from their tutors at the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and the Department of Justice (DoJ), apart from their manufactured evidence.
Not even the so-called digital files that Luy had claimed were copied by him in a hard disc drive (HDD) from the original computer of accused businesswoman, Janet Lim-Napoles, can stand the integrity test.
Joey Narciso, the NBI “forensic expert,” a witness of the prosecution in the bail hearing of Senator Revilla Thursday, under cross examination by Revilla’s defense counsel, Joel Bodegon, admitted that all the statements and conclusions he had made on the digital files copied on the HDD of Benhur Luy, and on which Leila de Lima and the yellow media, as well as the senator allies of Noynoy feasted to portray the three senators as guilty, were all done upon the instructions of Narciso’s superior, who he said told him how to conduct the forensic examination of the digital files, on what to say, to whom the files will be named and no doubt, who to point to as the receivers of kickbacks and commission, which would have to be just the three senators.
From the cross examination, it was found that the witness, Narciso, took over the position in the NBI only in 2012 and completed his training only in 2013, yet already he considers himself an expert even long before he had his training.
Narciso disclosed in open court that he was only concerned with the integrity of the HDD from the time the NBI took custody of the hard drive up to the present but not before that time.
He also testified that there is no way for him to say that Benhur Luy made all the files inside the HDD and even admitted that dates and metadata in the hard drive could be manipulated and that he cannot vouch for the integrity of the files in Luy’s HDD.
Thousands of files appeared had been deleted from the HDD of Luy, the NBI forensic expert who investigated the Luy files told the Sandiganbayan in open court.
Narciso admitted that he had spotted at least 2,410 files deleted from the HDD Luy that was used as evidence against the senator.
The NBI forensic expert said he had copied the contents of the hard drive to a CD after the drive was turned over to him.
In the HDD, Luy claimed he had documented the Priority Development Assistance Funds alleged transactions of Janet Lim-Napoles’ corporation awith lawmakers for their kickbacks.
Narciso also confirmed that Luy’s HDD may be susceptible to tampering due to the availability of technology. He also admitted that the files could have been edited last 2013 or during the period before Revilla was accused. According to him, it was also not true that the contents in Luy’s HDD were just copied because of the evidence that it was “opened and saved” years after they were said to have been created.
With these admissions from NBI’s Narciso, the HDD, which is the only “evidence” that can back up Benhur Luy’s accusation is useless.
No wonder the prosecutors tried to block the defense lawyers from copying all the files and be scrutinized by the experts. It will be recalled that Luy, Sula and Suñas all claimed that the millions they had accumulated in their bank accounts were their commissions from Napoles. It follows then that Luy’s HDD should have these transactions listed and there being no commissions given to them, the HDD won’t show these.
It is probable that Luy et al., who had pocketed the millions, maybe even “laundering” millions by placing them in the accounts of his kin, while claiming that these were pocketed by the legislators.
What a real scam. The self confessed criminals are going scot free, even when they continue committing more crimes against the the law and pin them on legislators.
The Ombudsman and its prosecutors should accept that they bungled the job and had coached and coddled the real criminals instead.

Only Binay, not Drilon?

Friday, 31 October 2014 00:00 Published in Commentary

Senate hearings on the alleged properties of Vice President Binay are claimed to be in aid of legislation, and have nothing to do with politics, the yellow subcommittee panel composed of three Torquemadas, Senators Koko Pimentel, Sonny Trillanes and Alan Cayetano, claimed.
If so, are the three senators also going to hold exactly the same type of hearings on the complaint filed with the Ombudsman on the alleged overpriced Iloilo Convention Center (ICC) after which, the hearings would segue into alleged hidden properties of Drilon held by his dummies, which would then take months on end — till election day, no doubt, during the campaign trail?
After all, it is on record that even as the VP and his family members already have a complaint filed against them also in the Ombudsman’s Office, and even the Sandigan, a hearing on the alleged overpriced Makati Building 2 was immediately started, after which, other alleged properties of the Binays, branded by the Torquemadas in the Senate as Hacienda Binay, along with charges of the property owners are merely dummies of the VP are continuously held.
Surely, if the Torquemadas in the Senate are merely out to ferret the truth on the VP’s alleged properties and hidden wealth, and go into insulting and ridiculing resource persons, and not allowing even the VP’s representatives to be at the hearings, while ordering them thrown out of the Senate since they are even called “gatecrashers,” and all, the Torquemadas claim that these hearings are being done to get at the truth. Surely then, they should do the same in the case of the complaint filed against Senate President Franklin Drilon, who is also being accused of plunder on the overpriced ICC.
Just check on the similarities of the cases: In VP’s case, the Torquemadas’ witnesses were claimed to be “insiders” who knew the ways the VP operates, even when they are not only caught at their lies, but are also self-admitted crooks and plunderers. In the case of Drilon, there is also an “insider” who was his PR man, whom Drilon claims is a liar and whom he had fired, for using his facebook to allegedly hit out at his, and Drilon’s foes.
Binay also had his vice mayor, Ernesto Mercado, who was not made the mayoralty candidate of Binay.
Binay called all the Mercado et al. claims “malicious” and “baseless.” So did Drilon.
Mercado has claimed that the Batangas property belongs to Binay, which the VP has denied.
It will have to be recalled that a few years back, a house and lot in Forbes Park was allegedly titled in the name of his step-daughter, who, at that time, was said to have been working in Starbucks or something to that effect, which could not possibly have been bought by the step-daughter. This was denied by Drilon, with threats to sue whoever wrote about this with libel.
Perhaps too, opening the Drilon hearings with the alleged overpriced ICC, and getting the complainant against Drilon as a witness and whistle-blower, then recommending the grant of immunity to the Drilon whistle-blowerm would be fair.
The Torquemadas did it n the case of Mercado, who had filed the plunder suit against the VP. They can do the same with Drilon and segue into other alleged hidden properties of Drilon, complete with Cayetano and his staff getting the photos of the Batangas farm while making the conclusion that indeed the property belongs to Binay — even when they do not present proof of their charges.
And not to forget, with the Torquemadas, even private citizens, are quickly alleged to be dummies, and they expect them to prove that they are not, when it should be they, who allege who should prove their charges against the persons. And to think two of the stooges are lawyers.
In any case, the house said to have been owned by Drilon was allegedly sold at a very high price. Does the possibility exist that the sale was a simulated one, and that yet another dummy was used? This was also the line of reasoning of the three Torquemadas in badgering Tiu and his lawyer.
Considering the similarities in the allegations leveled against the VP and Drilon, shouldn’t the yellow subcommittee panel, composed of the same three Torquemadas — if indeed such hearings are in aid of legislation and investigation of corruption of government officials and in search of the truth — now also demand to investigate Drilon?
If they don’t, what would the conclusion be?

Chutzpah

Thursday, 30 October 2014 00:00 Published in Commentary

Noynoy certainly has a lot of chutzpah, asking people to “discern properly” as he has “discerned” the right presidential candidate for 2016, saying to the public in general, to also discern properly as to who is extolling populist sentiments with no substance, as opposed to (another) who not only says the right things but (one) whom you can trust to deliver the same.
“So there should be a continuation of people of like mind who will deliver on the promises that are real and not just self-serving or nice or pleasant to hear,” he said.
What Noynoy says is truly laughable, considering the fact that he and his spokesmen, for years, have been saying that he and his yellow surveys pointed to him as still the only president thus far who is the most popular ever. He believes that he himself is popular and even used his mother’s death to get the votes — which still had to be propped by the fraudulent precinct count optical scan machines in 2010.
But even more galling of him is that he had the nerve to say that, like him and his discernment, the people should vote for a candidate who not only says the right things but who can be trusted to deliver on his promises.
That’s really what one can call chutzpah, since Noynoy is known to make promises that he never delivered — such as, but not limited to, the claimed inclusive growth and he even lies about his claims of achievements which were achievements of the past administration, but for which he shamelessly takes credit.
Like-minded like Noynoy? He wants people to elect someone who is as like-minded as him?
Good grief! Noynoy wants the Filipinos to have yet another divisive and vindictive president, a president who, like him says he delivers on his promises and says the “right” things.
Delivers on his promises?
He promised to wage a war against poverty, yet the poverty level has remained the same. The level never dropped. Worse, more people are hungry today.
He promised at least a million jobs a year, yet joblessness continues to be a huge problem.
Even peace and order have virtually collapsed under his administration — few feel safe even in their homes.
And what about the horrendous traffic situation in Metro Manila, not to mention the constant breakdown of the Light Rail trains, or even the continuing blackouts in Mindanao which have been going on for years and which he didn’t do anything?
Saying the right things? That’s really laughable.
Just think of what he said to the “Yolanda” victims, one of whom was a businessman, who had complained of people looting his store, and of him even being shot at. What right thing did Noynoy say to the businessman? “You didn’t die, did you?”
Or, with his anointed, Interior Secretary Mar Roxas, who was delivering his principal’s message, saying to the Leyte governor, Alfred Romualdez, in trying to get him to resign for his department to take over: “Remember that Aquino is the President, and you are a Romualdez.”
Was it the right thing for him come up with the fraudulent Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) funds, which he used as his personal pork barrel — and even used the same to bribe legislators and senators to impeach and convict a sitting chief justice whom he wanted ousted simply because he had ruled against the Aquino-Cojuangcos in their Hacienda Luisita?
Was it the right thing for him to keep on blasting away at the Supreme Court for what he calls “judicial overreach” merely because the SC refused to accept his “good faith” excuse over his and his budget secretary’s misuse of the DAP?
Ws it the right thing for him to have his political foes, opposition senators arrested, charged and detained for plunder to get them out of the election way but at the same time, protect his friends and allies from prosecution?
But what is really, really laughable is that he, as a then presidential candidate, never asked the Filipino electorate to vote for one who is popular (he claimed to be the popular candidate) and who extolled populist sentiments with no substance, since he was thoroughly inexperienced and worse, in all the close to five years in office, he still has not learned anything.
He never delivered on his promises, and said all the wrong things.
Noynoy just validated the mistake the Filipino electorate committed when they voted him into office. He is all that a president should not be.

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