Analyst dissects Janet testimony: All generalization

Posted at 05/29/14 12:12 PM

MANILA - There is nothing in businesswoman Janet Napoles’ affidavits that would help in the ongoing pork barrel scam, University of the Philippines College of Law Professor Victoria Avena said.

In an interview with radio dzMM, Avena said: "All she said there are generalizations and conclusions. There is no detail of any overt act that would help in convicting people.”

She said Napoles tried very hard in exculpating herself.

“She’s only defending herself. But it’s obvious she’s lying.”

She said Napoles' claims does not have substance compared to what whistleblower Benhur Luy revealed in the Senate Blue Ribbon committee hearings.

Luy submitted more than 31,700 pages of documents detailing the alleged modus operandi.

Avena noted Napoles even claimed she followed closely the government processes, but highlighted the businesswoman’s obvious error in saying that the process started with the release of special allotment release orders (SAROs).

"It doesn’t start there,” Avena said.

She also does not see the sincerity in Napoles’ appeal for forgiveness.

In her affidavit, Napoles said: “Kaya nais ko pong ipaalam sa lahat ang aking pagsisisi at paghingi ng tawad - una sa Diyos at pangalawa sa sambayanang Pilipino na naapektuhan nito. Hindi ko rin akalain na ako ay halos itakwil o itatwa ng mga matataas na opisyal ng pamahalaan na gumamit sa akin at ang ilan sa kanila ay ipinagkaila na kilala ako.”

Avena said there’s a big difference between “belief in God and the legal system… You tell God what you want to say, but that does not mean you get away from the legal system.”

Napoles did not even offer to return the money she got from the pork scam, the lawyer stressed.

“I don’t see the sincerity. She’s making us all look stupid,” she said.

Avena said Napoles’ affidavit will not unnecessarily delay the entire probe into one of the worst corruption scandals in Philippine history.

“It may delay, in the sense that investigators will have additional documents to study… but it will not derail the probe. We have intelligent agencies, and they know what the accused are doing,” she said.

She said the country’s democratic system is still young to tackle such kind of mess. “That’s why we just need patience. Let’s trust and help the system.”