Press Release
September 21, 2012

Interview of Senate President Enrile with Karen Davila at Headstart, ANC

SP We meet on the 40th anniversary of Martial Law. It is uncanny that all of these events have been somewhat involved. I was on the stage of every national drama like this, so I guess fate is like that.

Q And you are not tired?

SP No. It is a game of life.

Q Senator Antonio Trillanes had said why are you quoting those Brady's notes when they are Enrile's notes? I challenge Senator Enrile to release Brady's notes so that I can actually see if Ambassador Brady really took them down.

SP I want you to see this. This was sent to me, this envelope. It was sealed and there were signatures that I could not decipher on the sealing material. And it says to be opened by the addressee only. Secret. I read this because I know the rules of precipitation of security documents. I checked. After all, what was supposed to be secret documents, does not comply with the nature of documents to be classified as secret. The documents, Brady was reporting about a conversation she had with Senator Trillanes, and it all involves Philippine internal problems. It has nothing to do directly with the problem with China. He was talking about the inutility of the Department of Foreign Affairs, which is uncalled for.

Q I am curious, have you confirmed that it's actually Amb. Brady who made these notes?

SP It could not be otherwise because I think this material must have come from the files of the Department of Foreign Affairs and this is not really a state secret. Contrary to the impressions of uninitiated people, I know what is a state secret. That is something that you cannot reveal. I have been handling the security of this country for seventeen years and I know when a document ought to be classified. That is the training that I got.

Q Are you sure that these are actually from Amb. Brady?

SP Yes. They are authentic. I can swear to it. Not only that, not only the Brady report, there is another document also classified as secret and this is all in Tagalog. It contains some damaging statements also, not about the Scarborough issue directly, but about the official people of the government of the Republic handling it. As if the guy who was talking in this document is the expert in national security in this country.

Q Who in the Tagalog version of the Brady notes, is it the same as the English version? Or is it completely different?

SP It is different.

Q Completely? The content?

SP Completely different.

Q Who is speaking in these notes? The Tagalog?

SP This is a mystery, because alam mo, mukhang talagang may problema d'yan sa DFA, sabi niya. 'Yun ang umpisa.

Q Okay, foreign affairs.

SP Oo. Matagal ko ng hawak ito. I received this immediately after I attended the Cabinet meeting in Malacañang.

Q Sources tell me your rift with Senator Trillanes first started in a Cabinet meeting. You were invited to attend one of these meetings.

SP That's correct. I was officially invited by the President.

Q Okay. And you would ask Senator Trillanes?

SP I was surprised to see him there. He was on my right. Immediately at my right. Then when I sat down, he was whispering to me that there are traitors in this incident, he said. I did not mind, I thought he was talking about something else and then he said they are committing treason. I said how can there be treason, there was no war.

Q Who did he refer to as a traitor?

SP I did not know yet until after Secretary Del Rosario made a power point presentation. He was asked by the President to brief the Cabinet about what was going on in the Scarborough Shoal and the problem. It was a very objective assessment of the situation. A description of the situation on the ground. All the members of the Cabinet were there by the way. Secretary Roxas was there, he was still in DOTC. Then after that, after Secretary Del Rosario finished, Trillanes butted in and made a report about his trips to China, about his conversation with Chinese government officials, about his negotiations, and I was wondering. I said, who were the people that he met in China? Were they Politburo people involved here, or just clerks, or what level? He did not say. And so the second thing that entered my mind, how did he develop a channel to go to China just like that and knocking at the door of the Chinese government's ministry of foreign affairs? Unless he had a previous contact with them? Or they contacted him? I do not believe that China contacted him. I imagine he must have a contact with some people in China or with the Chinese government beforehand which is a dangerous thing because we must know his background. What channel was this? How did he get this channel?

Q No one knows?

SP So then I said who authorized you to make this backroom negotiation? The President of course was there, I was directly in front of him and he said he volunteered to help. I suppose, my impression was that because he was a navy man, the President naturally wanted to find an avenue to ease the tension in Scarborough Shoal. I think he allowed him to go because my impression is that he presented himself as an expert on this issue. I said, I made a remark, I am sorry, Mr. President, but I think we have to be very careful in approaching this problem in this fashion because this involves the interest of the country and we do not know what those people have written in those records. Do e have any record of these discussions? Nobody could answer whether this Trillanes submitted a written report.

Q There is no written report.

SP Later on I found out, I checked the records of the Senate, and he had no record of his trips to China. I have here the complete record of all his travels.

Q But should he put it in the Senate records if it's back channel?

SP Every Senator leaving the country, whether government funded or privately funded must seek permission of the Senate President.

Q Every Senator?

SP Yes.

Q So you need to give a travel permit?

SP Yes. In fact, I have to write the Department of Foreign Affairs. I have also information that, I have to verify this, that Senator Trillanes, in some of his trips to China, refused to have his passport stamped when he went there. There is no record or permit in the immigration office. Why the clandestine activity? That is the question that entered my mind. As a Filipino I will expose this. It is my duty.

Q Are you serious that he had asked that his passport not be stamped?

SP That is the information that I received.

Q And the DFA and the immigration office would have this?

SP The immigration office should be able to verify this.

Q Have you researched who is his source? Who is the connection to China?

SP I have to verify the information that I received that this is connected with the $70 billion that was supposed to have been promised by the Chinese government to the President when he went to China, President Aquino. I have not verified this but I got this information. I was wondering, how could this man , I have been in government for a long, long time, and I cannot just go to China and barge into the ministry of foreign affairs of China and make dealings with them.

Q Were his contacts businessmen?

SP I understand some businessmen in the country who have contacts in China.

Q Can he be admonished for this as a Senator?

SP I don't know yet, but I think it's worthwhile and imperative to watch the situation because when you are having people like that in the high circles of government, this reminds me of the case of Romero before the war. He went to jail by the way when he was discovered. I do not want a repeat of that.

Q What's very interesting is the President himself, Malacañang has confirmed that they have given Trillanes the authority. So clearly, there was an element of trust.

SP Yes, and you cannot fault the President for trying to find a solution to a national problem specially a problem such as what we are having with China, but the person entrusted by the President with any mission must exercise discretion. When you go to a country to deal with a foreign power, you must notify the embassy. That is the purpose of an embassy in that country. He should have notified the embassy to alert them that he is there to do some mission and he should have brought at least a responsible official of the embassy to be witness to what he is going to say and what is going to be said to him, to take notes. I am sure that the people that he contacted there had clerks writing or tape recording his statements, and that is the dangerous part of this whole thing.

Q Does the President know who the contacts are?

SP I have not inquired into that.

Q Are you going to give me a copy of the Brady report?

SP No. In fact, I have two envelopes. They came one after the other. This other documents, I don't want to...

Q What is in the other document?

SP Related to his trips. I don't want to exacerbate the situation any further.

Q But what did you discover in those documents?

SP Karen, I plead omerta.

Q We are opening it a bit right now. So this is the Brady report.

SP That is the Brady report. I could not possibly invent it. No mind, no matter how good, can invent the details here.

Q We are showing it right now, it is just numbered.

SP By the way, this is not state secret. No national security contrary to the statements of some people who are ignorant about the term national security.

Q Clearly, what is your understanding considering Amb. Brady had a massive stroke by writing this report even if Trillanes had requested not to take down notes.

SP Because Brady is a trained diplomat. It is her duty to make a report. You know, if you are a government official holding an ambassadorial position, you are the alter ego of the President. You are the President in that country. You represent the state and the President, and if you are a member of the Cabinet, any conversation that you get in relation to national interest, especially dealing with security, you have to make a report. It happened to me in my time. In fact, in the book that I have written, I described the incident.

Q Alright. So we are showing it right now. There are thirty points here... Twenty-six, the Chinese side suggested a visit of the DOT secretary to China, and twenty-seven, on the Chinese ships that maneuvered towards Philippine ships, Trillanes had said that these were ordinary moves that ships would do. Twenty-eight, Senator Trillanes was saying that Secretary Del Rosario should be replaced by Mar Roxas. Trillanes was saying this in front of just Brady or Chinese officials?

SP I don't know, these were notes of Mrs. Brady.

Q Twenty-nine, knowing that reports are coursed through the DFA, the Senator said that he would give an alternate channel so that communications can go directly to the palace.

SP He had already established a clandestine channel not passing through normal channels of the diplomatic service. My God, what record are they going to have? About his commitments, about his words, uttered in these conferences? Remember, he attended fifteen, not one, meetings with these people. What were discussed in those meetings? What was said by the Chinese? What was said by him to the Chinese> Nobody knows except him. He should reveal this to the people. To us.

Q I will expound a little on this, Amb, Brady had written that Trillanes had said we can go on bilateral talks. China also wants this.

SP Yes, that is precisely what he was advocating. He is following the Chinese line.

Q My sources tell me there was a vote in Malacañang whether to go bilateral or multi-sectoral. Were you in that voting, Senator?

SP Yes. I was there.

Q Thirty-four voted with multi-sectoral, meaning with allies?

SP Yes, of course. That is the proper thing to do. If you have friends and you are confronted with someone who is much stronger than you and you do not involve them and you deal with that person who is stronger than you, then your allies will say you did not discuss your problems with us, why should we get involved with you?

Q In number sixteen, Brady had written, this is the twelfth meeting of Trillanes with the Chinese.

SP That was only the twelfth. He had fifteen meetings. He did not discuss what he discussed with the twelve meetings that he had before Mrs. Brady wrote this note.

Q So Brady had written he was back channeling, PNoy did not know what was being worked out?

SP Correct. That is a dangerous thing. There was no reporting done, continuous reporting.

Q PNoy did not know that the talks were suspended by the Chinese for two weeks.

SP Correct. He was acting on his own. He is just like Col. North.

Q So Senator Trillanes at some time was already acting on his own?

SP Yes, and for whom? Whose interest was he serving?

Q I am curious because Senator Trillanes had said does it matter what my qualifications are when I solved the problem? He had said there were no more Chinese ships in Philippine waters, but Defense Secretary Gazmin said that there are still ships in the Shoal?

SP That is exactly the problem. He assumes in his mind that he has solved the problem, but look at this: you mentioned it, Gazmin said that the problem is still there. At the time that he was doing all of this conversation, the President hurriedly appointed Amb. Brady as ambassador to Beijing. We were asked to hurriedly confirm her nomination in order that she can go to Beijing. Now, if indeed Trillanes succeeded or somewhat to relieve the problem, what was the point in the hurry of sending an ambassador with the problem that was escalating? That is why everything is a falsehood. Lies that are being projected into the record to mislead the Philippine government. This is the dangerous part of this whole thing.

Q In relation to that did you know that Senator Trillanes was going to leave the Majority that day in the Senate?

SP No. I did not know. As far as we are concerned, we are happy that we are relieved of him.

Q But then you were prepared with a speech, and you had the Brady report on hand?

SP Because, if you remember early that morning there was a headline in the Philippine Daily Inquirer where this precise problem exploded, the problem of Trillanes and the problem of the Secretary of Foreign Affairs. Then I was told that Senator Trillanes made a reservation to deliver a privilege speech. I also knew from the headline that Senator Trillanes was unhappy because of what I did, calling his attention about his trips to China during that Cabinet meeting. I already knew at that point that h was spreading the story that he was going to unseat me but that did not matter to me. By the way, I cannot reveal the name of the person that warned me about this but this person is a very respected religious leader and his reporter was in that supposed lunch or dinner that Senator Trillanes called to discuss his role precisely in negotiating with the Chinese. He was bragging to these people but he wanted the conversation to be off the record. He said that in that meeting that I was pressuring Senators to do this, to do that, which of course is untrue. I have never pressured anybody to vote either way in anything in the Senate. Later on, somebody there was listening to him and he said they are going to unseat Enrile. He mentioned the name of Butch Abad as authorizing the move. I know Butch. He did not realize that Butch is a good friend of mine. I did not give any credence to that, I knew that he was talking hot air.

Q When Senator Trillanes was about to make a privilege speech, did you know it was about CamSur?

SP I did not know because there was no reason for him to be angry at me about CamSur. We waited for him to conduct his interpellation.

Q You had though that he was going to speak about his back channeling?

SP Yes. I though he was going to defend himself in that PDI headline story.

Q And you came prepared to ask him?

SP Yes.

Q Were you surprised when he talked about CamSur?

SP All of a sudden I was taken aback because he was attacking me.

Q That caught you by surprise.

SP Yes.

On CamSur

Q Were you really railroading the passage of the Bill?

SP Better for you to ask any of the Senators if I ever talked to them to vote one way or the other on the CamSur Bill. All I did was to tell them please conduct the hearings already so that we can dispose of this because there are interested members of the House of representatives. It is common for members of the House of Representatives to come to us.

Q In an interview in ANC, Governor LRay Villafuerte said that his father and Enrile are fraternity brothers in Sigma Rho. My father has been going to the Senate everyday lobbying and pushing for this Bill hopefully before the filing of certificates of candidacy. Let's not divide the province just for self-interest.

SP I never denied that Louie is a friend of mine way back. We were members of the Marcos Cabinet, we were together in the Mr. & Miss magazine which is on another newspaper, and then he helped me in my political activities. When he was a member of the Nacionalista Party, I was a member of the Nacionalista Party, but this is common. In the Bukidnon redistricting, the people there came to me, even the MILF they came to me discussing the ARMM.

Q So he is lobbying?

SP No, he was not lobbying, he was asking me if I could possibly exercise my leadership to finally bring this matter to a vote so that it can be disposed off. After all, this issue will not be decided by the Senate. It will be decided by the people of the province. There is a plebiscite.

Q Senator Marcos was quoted as saying that approving the Bill on second reading despite Trillanes' pending manifestation would set a dangerous precedent that could be invoked to rush other measures. Marcos complained of pressure from parties for and against the Bill, that would not be you, but then he said, was there an effort to pass the Bill on second reading despite Trilllanes' pending manifestation?

SP Well, there was a request but we had to follow our procedure. That is why yesterday, we adjourned without passing the Bill.

Q Do you think the Bill will ever be passed?

SP I don't know.

Q Are you for the separation or the passage of the Bill?

SP I do not normally vote unless there is a tie, but I have no preference one way or the other. Maybe I will vote in favor, but let us give the people of Camarines Norte a chance to decide for themselves. Who am I to impede them?

On Enrile's GMA connection

Q Senator Trillanes had said that you were a lackey?

SP You know I have been a friend of all the Presidents. All the way to Magsaysay, all the way to President Quirino, I knew them, they were coming to our house in Malabon.

Q Some people had said this was to protect Dato Arroyo's district.

SP I don't know that Mrs. Arroyo or the Arroyos were interested in this Bill. They never approached me. They never talked to me.

Q From a viewer: Why do you think Senator Trillanes has lost confidence in you?

SP I don't know. He is the only Senator ever to say that he lost confidence in me.

Q He had said that you could be manipulated.

SP The people will know whether I could be manipulated. When I take a stand, I stand by it up to the end and I am not like some people, they go to Oakwood, the Peninsula, and they run away.

Q From Alquin Papa: Isn't reading the Brady papers meant to shroud the issue of CamSur?

SP No. I really intended to expose this at the proper time and I thought that that was the proper time to let the people know of the behavior of certain officials in government. We are dealing with the country. We are dealing with the highest interest of this nation. It is our responsibility to protect this country even with our life. If Trillanes has not learned this from the academy, it is better for him to learn it now.

Q And you didn't know the speech was about CamSur?

SP I did not know.

Q From a viewer: Who exactly gave you Brady's notes? Was it distributed to everyone who attended the Cabinet meeting?

SP I don't know, I just received it.

Q From a viewer: Enrile has no business revealing classified secrets. Isn't that a violation of a Memorandum Circular issued by FVR?

SP This is not a confidential matter. This should be known to the people because this do not reflect the truth, and if you are going to make a report like this, or talk about this and this is the mind of an envoy of the Republic, it is misleading the mind of the country and a very important decision. This is working against the interest of the country.

Q Is there anything Senator Trillanes can do to appease you?

SP You start something, be man enough to stand by your terms.

Q I think walk-outs affect you.

SP No.

Q Corona, this time. Lagi kayong wino-walkoutan.

SP You know, people who go to the kitchen should be able to take the heat, but some people go to the kitchen and when they feel the heat they run away from the kitchen.

Q Corona, when he tried to do that that really changed everything. This time, the walk-out of Trillanes...

SP Because it betrays the character of the person. Shrewd. Rudeness. It is not proper in our parliamentary system.

Q Any reaction that Sec. Mar Roxas is the special envoy? Isn't this reflective in any way that DFA Secretary Albert Del Rosario cannot lead?

SP Not necessarily. Even during the time of President Marcos, Mrs. Marcos was travelling around the world. Representing the President in Russia, in China, with Romulo our number one... these are done, but the person assigned to do these things should know what he is doing. I am sorry to say, that based on these statements reflected on the notes of Mrs. Brady, the gentleman involved was ignorant about the nuances of being a representative of the President.

Q Where will this go? Ambassador Brady could not be interviewed.

SP Well, the documents speaks for itself. I don't think Mrs. Brady with all her experience and such would manufacture falsehood. Between her and Trillanes, I will take the word of Mrs. Brady.

On Representative Jack Enrile

Q Jack Enrile is running, is he ever going to come out and speak to media?

SP Yes, very soon he will. You know, he will be appearing very soon.

News Latest News Feed