Napoles ordered to appear at Senate probe-A A +A
Monday, October 21, 2013
MANILA -- Alleged mastermind of the multi-billion peso pork barrel scam Janet Lim Napoles and whistleblower Benhur Luy will face each other at the Senate Blue Ribbon committee hearing on November 7.
Senator Teofisto Guingona, committee chairperson, said there will be no conditions "and they can say anything."
In a press conference Sunday, Guingona confirmed that Senate President Franklin Drilon signed Monday the subpoena ad testificandum, a summons to compel Napoles to appear and testify at the Senate.
"We have issued subpoena to both parties. The subpoena also includes other witnesses like Merlina Sunas, Marina Sula, and Luy's family members et al," Guingona said.
The senator said the purpose of this move is for them to be able to hear both sides of the coin. "We call this the system of check and balance."
Napoles is now detained at Fort Sto. Domingo in Sta. Rosa, Laguna. She is under the custody of the Philippine National Police-Special Action Force.
The Senate sergeant-at-arms, retired general Jose Balajadia, is tasked to deliver the subpoena to Napoles and all the other witnesses.
Napoles is accused of setting up fake non-government organizations to siphon the priority development assistance funds of some lawmakers.
Napoles is facing a plunder before the Office of the Ombudsman for her alleged involvement in the pork barrel and Malampaya fund scams.
Senators Jinggoy Estrada, Juan Ponce Enrile and Ramon Revilla Jr. were Napoles' co-respondents in the plunder complaints filed in the Ombudsman.
Asked if senators whose names have been dragged to the PDAF scam will attend the hearing, Guingona said it is their option. He added that all senators expressed their approval to Drilon's move to summon Napoles.
The Philippine National Police will be responsible for the security of Napoles and the others. (Camille P. Balagtas/Sunnex)