Press Release
January 6, 2014

Enrile refutes PDAF scam charges

In compliance with the order issued by the Office of the Ombudsman, Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile filed his Counter-Affidavit last 20 December 2013, strongly refuting the charges filed by the National Bureau of Investigation and Atty. Levito Baligod, and the Field Investigation Office of the Office of the Ombudsman for his alleged involvement in the PDAF scam.

In his Counter-Affidavit, Sen. Enrile categorically said that the charges against him are absolutely baseless. He further emphasized that contrary to news reports and to the urban legend being spread by his political critics, the government's own evidence shows he never personally endorsed any NGO involved in the reported PDAF scam, whether connected to Janet Lim Napoles or not, to any implementing agency.

Sen. Enrile added that the only role he or his office played in the whole process was to identify specific projects to be funded under his PDAF allocation, as requested by the officials of the local government units involved. Such procedure, Sen. Enrile pointed out, is required by current laws and regulations and was being practised by all legislators, charged or not. He noted that it was ridiculous to charge him for obeying the law.

He pointed out also that, in his case, despite the public impressions to the contrary, it was solely the implementing agency that in fact actually designated the NGOs for the purpose of implementing and executing the projects involved. Citing the Supreme Court, Enrile noted that "from the regulation of fund releases, the implementation of payment schedules and up to the actual spending of the funds..." the Executive takes full control of the system, and, according to Sen. Enrile, "should not that power also come with full responsibility and accountability?"

Enrile noted that even Commission on Audit itself declared and admitted that the implementing agencies cannot "relegate this duty to the legislator."

In his reply, Enrile disputed the theory that he "may" have induced the agencies or the NGOs into misusing his PDAF allocation. He noted that the documents appearing to establish his alleged involvement or that of his staff were, as admitted by the government's own witnesses, the whistleblowers Merlina Sunas and Benhur Luy, all forged and fabricated.

Moreover, Enrile alleged that he does not personally know any of the agency officials involved, nor has he ever met Janet Lim-Napoles, socially or otherwise. Neither he nor his staff, as the whistleblowers testified, has been to the office of Janet Lim-Napoles. He has never been to a single social affair of Janet Lim-Napoles. He states there is not a piece of evidence, much less proof, to establish even the suspicion of conspiracy in a fair mind.

Enrile added that there is no testimonial or documentary evidence showing that he received any commissions or kickbacks. He categorically denied receiving "a centavo of ill-gotten wealth."

All whistleblowers admitted they never saw him receive any amount from Janet Lim-Napoles, much less 50% of the PDAF fund involved, as alleged by one whistleblower.

Sen. Enrile further pointed out that Luy himself has sworn that he merely put down in his accounting ledger whatever Janet Lim-Napoles instructed him to put down and that Luy himself admitted that he has no personal knowledge of these alleged transactions. Moreover, the source documents of any alleged payoffs to anyone were shredded and destroyed by Luy's group, as Luy himself admitted previously.

Sen. Enrile has been wildly accused and prejudged by several quarters and he simply asks that every fair minded person judge the case solely on its merits, and not on their personal likes or dislikes of him.

Sen. Enrile finally said that while he respects the old adage that everyone, including his critics, is "entitled to their own opinions", he does not believe, however, that this gives them the freedom to create their own "facts".

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