Cayetano calls Jinggoy 'He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named'
MANILA - Senator Alan Peter Cayetano said not all those named in the Commission on Audit (COA) report on the PDAF scam have committed infractions, contrary to what has been insinuated by “He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.”
During the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee hearing on Thursday, Cayetano was obviously referring to Senator Jinggoy Estrada, who blasted his colleagues in a privilege speech on Wednesday.
Estrada had questioned the partiality and objectivity of the Commission on Audit (COA), which has not highlighted alleged irregularities in the disbursements of the funds of senators Miriam Santiago and Alan Peter Cayetano; former senators Manny Villar, Kiko Pangilinan; House Majority Leader Neptali Gonzales and An Waray Rep. Florencio Noel, among others.
“He-Who-Must-Be-Named” is more popularly known as the Dark Lord, Voldemort, in the Harry Potter series.
Cayetano, who sought to clear himself, asked Justice Secretary Leila de Lima during the hearing: “If there are irregular expenditures, does it already mean it was stolen?”
De Lima answered, “not necessarily.”
Cayetano said the situation is already different when the legislator becomes part of the conspiracy.
De Lima agreed, saying: “That’s our clear goal - that is the legal theory we’re working on.”
Cayetano cited as an example the disclosure of Estrada on the P6.6 million that Aquino ally, House Minority Leader Neptali Gonzales II, used to purchase Jollibee meals. He said it has been their tradition in Taguig to buy what can be immediately delivered for the people affected by disasters such as floods.
“We don’t know a Jollibee NGO. I don’t think that’s part of the Napoles NGOs,” he said.
He later asked de Lima if stupidity can be penalized under the law. “May krimen ba ang katangahan,” he asked, to which de Lima answered, “None.”
Cayetano later pointed out that the Department of Justice is taking its time in naming names and not just selecting individuals so that charges will stand in court.
He said, “what is obvious in public opinion is not necessarily obvious in law.”
De Lima said they have been careful in their processes so that they will not be the one to be blamed in the end for a defective complaint.