Press Release
October 30, 2013

Transcript of interview with Senator Teofisto "TG" Guingona

Q: On the preparations for the Napoles hearing

STG: Right now, we are all preparing for the Napoles hearing. In fact, we are reading all the transcripts, affidavits of the whistleblowers and other documents that NBI has sent to us. We plan to finalized everything soon and ofc ourse during the holidays, magba-basa-basa. Malapit na.

Q: May seating arrangement ba? Possible bang magtabi sila?

STG: Hindi na natin sila pagtatabihin. Siguro si Napoles sa kabila at si Benhur Luy sa kabila. Face to face.

Q: 100% percent bang dadating si Napoles?

STG: Wala naman notice sa akin na hindi dadating so I suppose that means they are all coming.

Q: Sabi ni Senator Miriam na circus lang ito. Gagamitin ito sa 2016 election.

STG: But you know, Senator Miriam has supported my stand in fact she even said Napoles must be brought to the Senate. She has been consistently supporting our stand.

Q: Turning the hearing into a circus

STG: You've seen the hearings so far, would you say there were a circus? The rules were followed, the quorum was followed and so I don't see any circus. We already have 5 hearings and this will never happen under my watch.

Q: Una ba muna magsasalita si Napoles o magtatanong muna ang mga senador?

STG: The usual procedure. Yung chairman muna magtatanong, pagtapos yung mga ibang senador na dadating in order of their appearance.

Q: On the security

STG: The Sergeant-at-arms is coordinating with PNP and Witness Protection Program. I suppose their doing their job.

Q: Papayagan niyo po ba na parang Benhur Luy na may security sa likod?

STG: Why not. No problem on security there.

Q: Tighter on security sa November 7?

STG: Dapat. Dapat walang mangyari. Walang incidents dito and that is the job of the PNP, Senate Sergeant-at-arms and the Witness Protection Program.

Q: Immunity of Janet Napoles

STG: We cannot grant immunity. We can only recommend it. The one that can grant immunity is the court.

Q: In that case, there's no way na sinasabi nila na without such immunity you can (inaudible) Napoles to tell the truth.

STG: Who knows, she might want to tell the truth on her own here. You'll never know until she's here.

Q: Will you compel the implicated senators?

STG: They've already stated that they are inhibiting themselves. They've done soldiering the past 5 hearings and several months and I don't expect that to change, given the fact that they also said that they are inhibiting themselves even for this hearing.

Q: Ano gagawin niyo sir pag nakita niyo na parang political circus na yung hearing?

STG: You have to define what political circus is. Remember ano ba ang layunin natin dito: ano nangyari?; Paano Nangyari? Sino ang mananagot at paano maiiwasan na mangyari ulit?

Q: Paano ninyo mapipigilan na maging venue siya para sa grand standing?

STG: There are rules on the quorum. Dapat masunod iyon.

Q: Sasawayin niyo ba just in case may lumabag?

STG: We have to follow the rules . Rules are rules and they have to be followed. The quorum is the quorum and due courtesy given to individuals have to be followed including the rights of people appearing before the blue ribbon. They have the rights that have to be respected. That is non-negotiable.

Q: Issue on budget hearing na ginagawang Blue Ribbon hearing ng ibang senador.

STG: Ang watch ko ay andoon sa Blue Ribbon, hindi ako makakapag bigay ng comment sa ibang hearing ng mga senador sa ibang committee. Basta akin lang, ang turf ko, ang jurisdiction ko is the senate blue ribbon committee.

Q: Will this be a one time big time Napoles appearance?

STG: I don't know really because im not sure how many senators will attend. For example lang it's already 4:35 and there's still some more senators who want to ask questions then obviously will have to go back another day but kung matapos agad , wala ng tanong, then will go home.

Q: May limitations ba kung ilan ang possible questions ng mga senador.

STG: Wala naman limitations.

Q: Paano yung mga senador na late na dumating pero natanong na naman ng senador?

STG: I'm sure this time because of the importance of the occasion ay hindi sila ma-late. Malamang mal-late pero few minutes lang hindi oras.

Q: On granting Napoles against self-incrimination.

STG: It depends on the question that you ask whether she can invoke the right to self-incrimination and therefore that has to be addressed that issue of whether there is proper invocation or not has to be addressed after she invokes it and after the question has been asked.

Q: Per question?

STG: Per question.

Q: Mapapahaba ang hearing talaga niyan.

STG: Kung saka-sakali. Kung each and every question diba?

Q: Illegal detention lang naman kaso nya, applicable na bay un sa kanya?

STG: Applicable na yun. We must give people appearing before the Senate Blue ribbon the widest latitude when it comes to their rights. And I for one would like to respect the rights of citizens.

Q: Ano yung guarantee nyo kay Napoles for her to tell all?

STG: Let's not...I don't want to...I just want to invite her, and see what she has to say.

Q: Masyado raw marami magsasalita. Bakit hindi na lang si Napoles muna ang imbitahan? Ganun daw kasi ginawa kay benhur luy.

STG: At that time kasi there was the issue whether we could issue a subpoena or Ms. Napoles because... you know what happened. But now, we can have everybody there so we can have cross-reference with the whistleblowers.

Q: They can confront each other as well?

STG: Yes. But of course, the questions are controlled by the senators and the committee chairman.

Q: will you allow them to ...

STG: No, no, no... yung magga-ganunan? Hindi. We will maintain order.

Q: Do you see the napoles testimony as the end of the probe? Because other senators want an investigation on the non-napoles ngo's

STG: We will have to do the others also. Next one on the list would be the Malampaya.

Q: PAno yung pag-subpoena sa mga chief-of-staff?

STG: Yes that's another issue we have to confront after the napoles hearing. We will evaluate right after the napoles hearing. Whether 'ano, sapat na ba para matapos?' considering the fact that we still have the malampaya...

Q: how about the other names linked to napoles? The LWUA chair was named, would you summon them?

STG: Ganito no, you must remember the goals, yung layunin natin dito. The goals are different from the Ombudsman. Therefore the quantum of information that we need is not the same. Once nasagot na yung mga tanong natin with the information we get, sapat na yun. If it were a criminal investigation like the Ombudsman, then you have to be very very thorough.

Q: Di ba necessary to get the staff para makumpleto picture?

STG: We will evaluate.

Q: with t testimony of the whistleblowers, would you say na 75 percent na tayo in completing the picture? In piecing together the story, the scam?

STG: yeah we have a pretty good idea already.

Q: LWUA chair admitted to lawyering for napoles. As LP member are you aware of this?

STG: I was only made aware of it this morning when I read the paper.

Q: Wala kayong concern na pwedeng ma-drag ang administration party...

STG: kailangang malaman ng tao ang katotohanan dito. Whoever, come what may, as I've said we will leave no stone unturned. That's why we're calling Napoles, because she is the center stone. It's important that we call her. Kaya I never wavered in my insistence that we must subpoena Janet Lim Napoles. They're saying 'she might invoke her right against self-incrimination'. Yes, that's her right. But the principle is 'we have done everything including calling mrs napoles here in the senate.

Q: Pero sir as party member you think na-tarnish yung image ng LP because of Villa's link with Napoles.

STG: Definitely not. That's just one person.

Q: Is this something na pag-uusapan nyo ng admin?

STG; I don't think so.

Q: Bakit sir? Dahil nangyari naman ito before becoming LWUA chair?

STG: No... I think this is something that Mr. Villa can address himself.

Q: You said Malampaya will be next. What about DAP?

STG: That's not in my committee. Most probably that would be with Senator Chiz.

Q: What about the health issue? Do we need to check?

STG: If there's an issue... but, they don't give us any notice that there's anything wrong so what for.

Q: Sir yung issue ng DAP...

STG: It's not with me.

Q: Di pwede maging joint?

STG: What for? It's not with me. It's an issue of the budget. What committee has the jurisdiction over the budget?

Q; Pwede paulit sagot over this becoming a circus.

STG: there are rules. There are rules of the senate. Me karapatan ang mga tao na haharap. Gagalangin natin ang mga karapatan ng mga tao. Sundin natin ang rules. I give my personal commitment that it will never happen under my watch.

Q: Former justice chair Renato puno said that pwedeng ma void yung impeachment kung mapatunayan na me bribery...

STG: there was no bribery. Hindi mangyayari yun.

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