Press Release
September 25, 2013

Transcript of Interview of Senate President Franklin M. Drilon

On the plunder case filed against him

Q: Sir, iyong plunder case sa inyo...

SP: It's a malicious prosecution, harassment. Obviously, a discredited political leader of Iloilo is taking advantage of the situation. This alleged plunder happened allegedly happened in 1992 or about 21 years ago. I have nothing to do with that and I don't even know who the contractor is. There is already a certification by a group of professional engineers hired by the DPWH which certified that the building is structurally sound, nothing wrong with it. The rehabilitation did not come from my PDAF. It came from the regular budget of the DPWH. This is a malicious prosecution. This is nothing more than an effort to malign.

Q: Sir, who do you think is behind this?

SP: I do not know. I just know that Augusto Syjuco filed it. He's facing criminal charges before the Sandiganbayan as TESDA Director General for overpricing. He's now undergoing trial. We defeated him in the last election and he blames me without any basis that I caused the withholding of his PDAF. I cannot do that. So, this is a malicious suit.

On the subpoena for Janet Napoles

Q: Sir, iyong iba po ninyong colleagues hindi sila satisfied sa decision niyo regarding sa subpoena kay Napoles...

SP: Well, the Ombudsman advised us that in the meantime we can defer the testimony of Janet Napoles. We deferred to his judgment. We exercised caution. We would rather err on the side of prudence because what is important is that the justice system must be able to work and the Ombudsman has advised us to defer. So, I followed that advice as I said, I would rather err on the side of prudence. It is not a question of who is supreme, the Senate of the Philippines or the Office of the Ombudsman. What is important is that we uphold the supremacy of the law.

We have already decided that we exercise caution and prudence. There is no scheduled caucus.

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