Press Release
May 8, 2017

*Statement of Akbayan Senator Risa Hontiveros on the acquittal of Napoles in Luy illegal detention case

Pork barrel queen Janet Lim Napoles is just a breath away from freedom.

With the help of no less than the country's Solicitor General, the acquittal of Napoles from her illegal detention case seriously undermined the credibility of state witness Benhur Luy, whose testimony is the only thing keeping her and the accused high-profile public officials in jail. This sets into motion the possible release from prison of all those responsible for plundering the nation's coffers.

This is truly a sad day for all those pushing for justice and accountability. This is deplorable coming after the acquittal of Gloria Macapagal Arroyo of plunder charges, and a hero's burial for the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos. All of these contradict the Duterte government's anti-corruption promise.

May I remind the Duterte administration that corruption and the failure to curb it are some of the decisive elements in the weakening of governments. The dangerous combination of authoritarianism and softness on corruption bodes ill for the strength and legacy of the administration.

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