STRANGE how two persons have something in common: Janet Napoles and President Noynoy Aquino. And in an odd way.

Butch Abad is the president’s budget secretary, with his daughter as President Management Staff (PMS) chief: key centers of power in an administration.

PNoy can’t do away with Abad so easily. Even with the disclosure of his alleged link to the pork barrel fraud, the president needs more than the file of Benhur Luy to drop him from the Cabinet. As Sen. Trillanes put it, “Nakadugtong ang bituka nang dalawa.”

Butch Abad is also the alleged mentor of Janet Napoles. She learned tricks of the game from him, she said in an affidavit filed with Department of Justice and ombudsman. She’s only a high school graduate, she said, and Butch Abad taught her how.

There’s a difference on PNoy’s and Janet’s ties to Butch Abad: the president doesn’t deny his closeness to Butch Abad while Abad vigorously denies he’s Napoles’s “maestro.”

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Why Napoles camp made that mistake

JANET Lim Napoles noticed only last May 28 the mistake of including the name of Rep. Gerald “Samsam” Gullas in her pork barrel list.

Thursday, May 29, lawyer Bruce Rivera told Manila reporters in a text message, “Last night, JLN noticed the mistake. It is not Gerald Gullas Jr. but Eduardo Gullas.”

Atty. Rivera said it was error on their part. Napoles’s transaction record “only indicated dealings with a ‘Gullas’.” “The secretary who encoded the list assumed it was the incumbent that was implicated,” Atty. Rivera said, explaining that the mistake was made “due to pressure to finish the second affidavit on the scheduled deadline.”

Cebu news stories about the error reported Napoles’s correction but not the reason for it. The mistake drew loud protests from many sectors of the Cebu public that saw it as grossly irresponsible.

Some Manila media outfits confused former congressman Eddie Gullas as father of Samsam Gullas. Rappler.com wrongly reported that Gerard Gullas is the son of Eduardo Gullas, which it corrected. The subsequent story highlighted the correction. “It was the grandfather, not the grandson,” said Rappler’s May 29 story lead.

Both Eddiegul and Samsam have stoutly denied any participation in the pork barrel mess: the elder Gullas, citing his spotless record in public service for the past three decades or more; the younger Gullas, citing that he still wasn’t a congressman when the shady deals were made.

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Trillanes for president or VP

IF YOU still haven’t noticed, Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV considers himself an “alternative” candidate for president or vice president.

He says not being in the pork barrel list is not having a “baggage” if one runs for higher office. He’s not in any pork list and his partymate and presidential aspirant in the NP, Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano, is.

[bzzzzz@sunstar.com.ph or paseares@gmail.com]