Aquino defends Padaca's appointment, explains bail-A A +A
Friday, October 5, 2012
PRESIDENT Benigno Aquino III justified Friday his decision to appoint former Isabela governor Grace Padaca as the newest commissioner of the Commission on Elections (Comelec).
In an interview in Pampanga, Aquino said while Padaca is not a lawyer, she herself is a victim of electoral malpractice, and therefore, she could implement reforms in the current electoral system and make sure that laws under the Omnibus Election code are followed.
"For her would be experiential. Since she is a victim, she will be fervent to correct the existing system. So that is her major qualification," Aquino said.
"She knows how the mandate of the people was violated in the past elections. Maybe this time, she will have an opportunity to fix the system and implement the law," he added.
He likewise noted that Padaca has been a long-time public servant who has integrity and righteousness.
The Chief Executive also defended his move to pay for Padaca's P70,000 bail, saying he believes that the former governor is innocent.
"I don't believe she is guilty...She has helped ease the problem of her farmers in her province," he said.
Political analyst Malou Tiquia criticized Aquino for posting bail for Padaca, saying the President has put his advocacy for good governance "in doubt." She said paying for Padaca's bail is "not right."
Padaca is being charged with malversation and graft charges for awarding to a non-government organization the management contract of a P25-million credit facility for the rice farmers in the province sans a public bidding in the year 2006.
In her defense, the former governor said the project in question did not require bidding and that the government was not damaged by the deal. (Jill Beltran/Sunnex)