Bail forfeited by the Sandiganbayan, Padaca tells Revilla

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Tuesday, January 21, 2014


COMMISSION on Elections (Comelec) Commissioner Grace Padaca on Tuesday clarified that the bail of P70,000 paid by President Benigno Aquino III has been forfeited by the Sandiganbayan.

In her Facebook account, the poll body official explained that last October 22, 2013, the 3rd division of the Sandiganbayan foregone the bail as the latter decided to deduct the amount to the travel bond it earlier required to the government official.

"The court ordered that the amount needed for my new bail be deducted from the travel bond it earlier required me to post as a condition for allowing me to travel to the UAE in April 2013 to supervise training in the Middle East for overseas voting in the May elections," she said.

Thus, the bail paid for by the Chief Executive from his personal money has been cancelled.

"Wala na pong bisa iyong personal na pera ng Pangulo bilang piyansa ko. Ito ay kinansela na ng hukuman at pinagbayad ako ng bago," Padaca said.

On Monday, Senator Ramon Revilla Jr. condemned Aquino's effort to help Padaca, who has a pending graft and malversation charges before the anti-graft court.

In his privilege speech, the lawmaker noted that the Aquino administration should be fair in helping people and should not look on what political party or color an individual is affiliated with.

Padaca is a member of the Liberal Party, where Aquino is the chairman.

Padaca reiterated her earlier statement that the move of Aquino will not in any way affect her decisions as Commissioner of the poll body.

"I have been here in the Comelec for one year and three months and I am not aware of any complaint that has been lodged against me regarding my independence," the Comelec official added.

She noted that she was happy with the decision of the Sandiganbayan so that the President will not be anymore criticized.

Padaca was accused of irregularity for disbursing a P25-million grant to the Economic Development for Western Isabela and Northern Luzon Foundation Inc. (EDWINLFI) during her term as governor of Isabela.

Last May 2012, the Sandiganbayan issued its first warrant of arrest after finding probable cause against Padaca.

The Office of the Ombudsman then said that the former Isabela governor allowed EDWINLFI to act as middleman in disbursing the loan to farmers, but it failed to liquidate P3.6 million and that P18 million of the loans were placed under loan receivables. (FP/John Carlo Cahinhinan)

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