‘Old politician’ in Aquino’s address not Enrile: Palace-A A +A
Thursday, October 31, 2013
SENATOR Juan Ponce Enrile was not the one that President Benigno Aquino III was referring to as "an old politician" in his televised address Wednesday night when he slammed the critics of the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP), a Palace official said Thursday.
Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma said in a news briefing that Aquino was not referring to anyone as he asked the public not to make the President's statement a subject of speculation.
"Wala po siyang tinutukoy," he said when asked if the President was referring to Enrile as the old politician who gave advised to his camp to muddle the issue on the Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) and the DAP.
"Wala pong layunin ang Pangulo na mang-intriga sapagkat siya po ay disiplinadong tao. Siya rin po ay naipanganak sa isang political family. Normal po na mula pa sa kanyang kabataan na-expose na po siya sa maraming salaysay hinggil sa mga observations ng mga pulitiko, ano," he explained.
"Kaya ako po ay naging saksi sa paghahanda ng kanyang talumpati, ni minsan po ay wala po akong narinig na pangalang binanggit hinggil sa bagay na ‘yan, kaya hindi na po dapat maging subject to speculation," Coloma added.
In his national address Wednesday night in Malacanang, Aquino said that because those who were allegedly involved in the misuse of pork barrel found it difficult to explain the issue, they instead muddled it.
"Sa sobrang hirap nga pong ipaliwanag, tila sinunod na lamang nila ang payo ng isang matandang pulitiko sa kanilang kampo: Kung hindi mo kayang ipaliwanag, palabuin mo na lang lahat; kung hindi mo kayang bumango, pabahuin mo na lang lahat; kung hindi mo kayang gumuwapo, papangitin mo na lang lahat. Narinig naman ninyo ang hirit nila: Pare-pareho lang naman daw kaming lahat," Aquino said.
But Coloma reiterated that the President was not referring to any specific individual.
The President also stressed in his first national address which was aired by the different networks that he was not a thief, prompting the other accused, such as Senators Jinggoy Estrada and Ramon Revilla Jr., in the pork barrel scam to claim also that they were not thieves.
Enrile, Estrada and Revilla were among those charged with plunder for allegedly pocketing multi-million pesos from their PDAF.
"Kung 'yun po ang kanilang naging tugon, bayan naman po ang ultimate judge, ano, at gagawa po ng determination. At hinggil naman doon sa kanilang inclusion in the information filed before the Ombudsman, there are already appropriate processes that are in motion to determine that," Coloma said.
He also expressed belief that the President's speech Wednesday night received "75 percent" positive feedback from social media users. (SDR/Sunnex)