Gov't to step in if Napoles health raised in court
MANILA, Philippines -- Government doctors will step in once the camp of alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles files a motion in court regarding her mental and physical health, Malacañang said yesterday.
The findings will determine whether Napoles indeed needs someone to accompany her in detention in Sta. Rosa, Laguna or be brought to a hospital for treatment.
Napoles’ lawyer, Lorna Kapunan, said solitude could do things to people, including mental harm.
“She’s in solitude. She’s alone by herself at night. It is natural for a person who’s alone at night to be talking to one’s self, to be imagining things,” Kapunan was quoted in reports as saying.
Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said over radio dzRB that prosecutors would just answer any motion to be filed by Kapunan in court. As of the moment, she said Kapunan’s statements were only reported in the media.
Asked if government doctors would be asked to check on Napoles, Valte said, “Yes, of course.”
“If a motion is filed in court to that effect, we will meet it also in court and, of course, the government will also check the basis. We will not take their word for it, certainly,” Valte said.
Concerns over Napoles’ mental well-being surfaced after she was rushed to a hospital because of pain, nausea, and constant vomiting caused by stones in her ureter. Napoles was reported to be in stable condition last Thursday.
Kapunan said Napoles’ doctor disclosed her client was taking tranquilizers to calm her down.
Her mental state is also one of the reasons why her camp is asking for a “more humane treatment” while detained at Fort Sto. Domingo.
Napoles wants someone to accompany her in her detention center at night. She has been detained in the Laguna fort for more than a month because of serious illegal detention charges. She is also facing a plunder case for allegedly masterminding a P10-billion pork barrel scam.
Kapunan also defended her client from allegations of “special treatment,” saying the plunder investigation would be long and it would be in the interest of the public that “she be maintained in good physical and mental health.”
Napoles’ lawyer would not say if her physical and mental condition would bar her from attending a Senate Blue Ribbon committee hearing on Nov. 7.
Kapunan added that the Senate would send its own doctor to check on Napoles’ health.
“Just so there’s no misunderstanding that we are laying the basis that she needs hospital arrest or so that she would not attend the Nov. 7 hearing,” said Kapunan.
She earlier told the media they would not go for the “wheelchair defense” or request for hospital arrest.