President Noynoy Aquino should answer for corruption during his term

There is something strange about the way Philippine President Benigno Simeon “BS” Aquino reacts to certain issues that plague his administration. When the President talks about people who he thinks are corrupt, he usually goes into attack mode and lambasts them in front of his audience. This was evident when he shamed former Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona at the National Criminal Justice summit back in 2011.

BS Aquino in fine attack form
BS Aquino in fine attack form
Back then, a lot of Filipinos were shocked and disgusted with the way the President acted like a toddler throwing a tantrum and hurling insults at Corona who he insisted was getting in the way of his Daang Matuwid. In fact, BS Aquino didn’t stop conducting a trial-by-media and talked about Corona’s alleged “crimes” in public until he succeeded in his campaign to remove him from office.

Fast-forward to today, his recent state of the nation address (SONA) showed him doing almost the same thing. But this time, some people thought he was more bark than bite when he talked hard about “naming names” while completely avoiding naming the names of the people he thought were involved in corrupt activities in various government agencies such as the Bureau of Customs (BoC). A few weeks after BS Aquino’s SONA, no one from the BoC has been sacked or replaced even after the bad rap he gave the agency.

Could not name the names of the "powerful forces"
Could not name the names of the “powerful forces”
Frankly, some people think that BS Aquino’s apparent lack of guts in getting rid of the BoC officials he alluded to in the SONA has a lot to do with the fact that he handpicked them himself for the posts. His inaction after their offer of resignation says a lot about his inconsistency and inability to accept that he chose incompetent people for sensitive positions. He is probably regretting putting them on the spot to begin with because now that he has highlighted that corruption still persists in the BoC, his critics are waiting for his next move. Obviously, BS Aquino was trying to wash his hands from any fraudulent activities that still go uninterrupted during his term. It’s short of saying, “I’ve got nothing to do with it”. But in a way, he does have something to do with it.

To be fair, since BS Aquino had very little experience managing people before he became the head of state, he might not know the concept of command responsibility. Although, when he was being interviewed by CNN for their program Eye on the Philippines in 2012, Anna Coren asked him why he seemed to be singling out former President Gloria Arroyo in his fight against corruption. His response was that as the Chief Executive back then, GMA should have done something about the transgressions during her term. Like I said before, if we are to follow his logic on this, then he should do something about the transgressions committed by public servants during his term too.

Did she or didn't she?
Did she or didn’t she?
During an ambush interview with reporters, BS Aquino’s inconsistency was again evident in his statement about the alleged Priority Development Assistance Funds (PDAF) scam or what is being dubbed the “pork barrel scam” involving members of Congress. He claimed that the 10 billion-peso scam is nothing compared to the P728-million fertilizer fund scam during the time of former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. To quote:

“Compare it to the fertilizer scam, how big was the difference? And the fertilizer scam is the tip of the iceberg, there are more,” he said in an interview referring to the P728-million fertilizer fund scam during the time of former president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

Apparently, the Philippine President is not good with his numbers either. But that is not even the worst thing that the public can take away from his statement. Not only did he try to divert the attention of the media from the alleged pork barrel scam, it seems he is not giving it as much importance as the past administration’s alleged transgressions. Absent during the ambush interview was his usual naming and shaming of those who were implicated in the alleged scam but present was his shaming of GMA and her trial by media that came with it.

In another statement, BS Aquino emphasized that his administration is not perfect and that he cannot claim to have zero corruption under his government. To wit:

“Hindi naman namin puwedeng sabihin na magiging perpekto (ang proseso). Hindi namin puwedeng masabi na talagang zero na ‘yung pagkakataon ng mga tiwali na mapagsamantalahan.”

Since that is the case, he should understand that during previous governments, it was also impossible to stamp out corruption down to zero level without the cooperation of those involved. Therefore, he should realize by now that blaming GMA for all the transgressions committed by people from various government agencies is unproductive, divisive and pointless. If he doesn’t stop blaming the previous government, his political opponents will also blame him for his people’s transgressions.

Going back to the alleged 10 billion-peso pork-barrel scam, the Filipino people should realize that if President BS Aquino does not put pressure on the investigation the way he did with the others he had vested interest in, it will not be resolved at all. All this information circulating on the Net claiming to be from reliable sources that discuss the various ways with which the family of Janet-Lim Napoles were able to get away with the crime of the decade will just fade to black. All the calls for forming an “independent panel” to probe the allegations or any investigation by various agencies will not stop this kind of con from happening again.

Senator Miriam Santiago likewise explained the hopelessness of the case progressing into criminal prosecution when she requested President BS Aquino to form an independent panel to investigate the claims:

Santiago explained that the panel will be the “only recourse” in the issue because senators cannot be impeached, and are not under the jurisdiction of the Ombudsman.

“Senators are extremely powerful, both with their money and with their influence and contacts in government so we cannot have them investigated by the DOJ because a Cabinet member Leila de Lima, has not even been confirmed by the Commission on Appointments. On that issue, she will be vulnerable,” Santiago told reporters after her speech.

Santiago said the Senate Committee on Ethics is also not the proper venue, citing “social constraints” in investigating senators’ own colleagues.

Likely Senate President Franklin Drilon agreed with Santiago, citing conflict of interest if the Senate investigates its own. He proposes the imposition of restrictions on the use of the pork barrel, like limiting it to education and health services, saying these can easily be accounted for.

With Leila de Lima powerless to do anything with the information published by various media outlets, it seems like the members of Congress who have been implicated by the whistle-blower can simply sit this one out until the public loses their interest. The Filipino people have no choice but to keep talking about this issue until another shocking one takes over — unless, by some miracle, Filipinos wake up from their stupor and realize that the only way to end this is to immediately remove the source of the problem, which is the Priority Development Assistance Funds (PDAF) or pork barrel as soon as possible.

As mentioned previously, since President BS Aquino does not seem interested in applying the full weight of his office on the matter, this case is pretty much closed particularly with all the conflicts of interest and the limitations of the Department of Justice. It’s all quite amusing, really. With or without the allegations against the members of congress being investigated, they still have a big chance of being elected in the next election. That is how ignorant the voters are to the real state of the nation.

Where are the members of the “Black and White Movement” when you need them? In the past, you could count on them to make a lot of noise about issues like these. Oh, that’s right. They are now members of the Yellow team with Leah Navarro recently appointed to the Movie and Television Review and Classification (MTRCB) Board.

[Photo of Janet Lim Napoles courtesy Yahoo! News.]

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Post Author: Ilda

In life, things are not always what they seem.

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55 Comments on "President Noynoy Aquino should answer for corruption during his term"

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Johnny Derp
Guest

Another great article Ilda! Although Im very sure our “favorite” idiot from malacanang will show his face here, he can’t refute the facts that you presented here in your blog post since everybody has seen the way the president acted towards his KKK which is that he protects them and shows a double standard for those who he perceives as his political enemies.

He definitely should answer for his crimes although I believe an impeachment complaint is not impossible anymore since he is slowly losing his control over the congressmen.

domo
Guest

And then we have the bombings in Mindanao recently. I wonder if that was another diversionary tactic by penoy and his merry mafia to the Filipinos to forget that pork barrel controversy.

Johnny Derp
Guest

Well, that is a possibility since they can’t use kris aquino the slut to do a diversionary drama on the issue. The fact remains that the pork barrel scam is obviously way worse than the fertilizer fund scam.

And the way that abs cbn’s attempt at resurrecting aquino magic spectacularly backfired in their faces, more and more people are already getting tired of the incompetence this aquino family has wrought in our country.

ninjaone
Guest

The black and white movement has turned yellow. True patriots do not back up one man, but one country.

traffice
Guest

Dapat tanungin niya yung sarili niya ng ganito “Saan kaya ako kumukuha ng kapal ng mukha” 🙂 well, Kristeta can honestly answer him “We are Aquinos, Hello saan pa! Noynoy talaga you’re so slow.

Amir Al Bahr
Guest

That sound bite from Noynoy is so overplayed in 92.3 Radyo Singko.

“Saan po kayo kumukuha ng kapal na mukha?”

“We get it from you, Mr. President! Because you’re too damn incompetent!”

domo
Guest

Like Dick Gordon said, kung corrupt ang presidente, corrupt din ang taong bayan. penoy is making himself a very bad example to Filipinos.

John Vergel
Guest

“Saan kaya ako kumukuha ng kapal ng mukha?”

Kris: Mom taught us well.

Hahahaha!

libertas
Guest
The worst aspect of the napoles affair is not the corruption itself, appalling as that is, or even the denials and lack of interest to investigate in the senate/congress, irresponsible and predictable as that is, but the attempt by pnoy and the administration to divert attention and put a lid on the whole sordid saga, which is tantamount to deriliction of duty. That indicates how high and wide the corruption goes right now on pnoy’s watch, and the real fear of implicating people in the government, especially mar roxas, and his future ambitions. it finally nails pnoy as a hypocrite… Read more »
Antonio
Guest
We should start a civil disobedience campaign by NOT paying our taxes until the PDAF is killed and no replacement made to it. Politicians must not have a hand in the process. They must only recommend and an independent group must vouch for the need of the project in his district. Another independent group must then look at the financials to make sure the money spent is appropriated. Then a third independent group must monitor it. Alam niyo, magiging mahal pero siguro naman walang katapat ang 100M peso budget for these three groups vs the Billions that are lost to… Read more »
Manuel Mejorada
Guest
libertas
Guest
90% of the highest earners in the philippines – 1.7 million professionals – pay no tax, which clearly has a detrimental impact on real economic growth, however this systemic tax avoidance is clearly rooted in a view that people will not pay tax, only to see it stolen by politicians and wasted by incompetent bureaucrats. Maybe rather than focussing on a ‘name and shame’ campaign for non taxpayers ( small fish only no doubt), tge government would do better to name and shame corrupt politicians, abolish pork barrel, employ professional people in govt, and then maybe more people would be… Read more »
Peace Walker
Guest

Then get the hell out of the kitchen.

eachhisown
Guest

What positive motivation can the government share to motivate taxpayers (small and medium) to pay their taxes on time and honestly when notoriously most politicians and government officials perhaps don’t even their taxes and are known to plunder government’s money and go away scott-free?

Even some of the ordinary government employees are boasting to their friends how they misuse or squander taxpayer’s money.

It’s really amazing how brazen most politicians and officials in the government are that they can be proud of not doing anything to stop corruption but arrogantly assert that they be addressed as “honorable”.

ED VALENCIANO
Guest
As mentioned previously, since President BS Aquino does not seem interested in applying the full weight of his office on the matter, this case is pretty much closed particularly with all the conflicts of interest and the limitations of the Department of Justice. It’s all quite amusing, really. With or without the allegations against the members of congress being investigated, they still have a big chance of being elected in the next election. >>>>>>>>>>>>>> THIS PRETTY SUMS UP WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO THIS NAPOLES SCAM. AFTER THE NOVELTY OF IT ALL, PEOPLE WILL GET TIRED TALKING ABOUT IT, AND THEN… Read more »
libertas
Guest

Just get rid of pork barrel. It is the number one source of corruption, not just financial but also culturally as it has a trickle down effect, unlike economic growth!
Dont throw good money after bad in creating more bureaucracy, nor change the ‘rules’ which will be circumvented and just be window dressing to assuage the current level of anger and disgust.
Spend the savings where they are needed with high visibility, transparency and accountability with demonstrable auditable benefits.

eachhisown
Guest

One principle for a strong and professional leader is never scold your people in front of other people much more in public.

Psychologically looking at the method of Pnoy is that only a weak coward leader could resort to his way of dealing with delinquent employees.

Most probably he never have even the slightest nerve to reprimand his people face to face.

His method demonstrates that perhaps he is a lover of suckers, because maybe he could not acquire enough stamina and capability to make his own direct evaluation of his people much more investigate with impartiality.

Tokwa
Guest

IMHO it is nothing more than a lip service.

Lord Chimera
Guest

Very good article miss Ida and now all we need to do is wait for everyone’s favorite troll to bring us his nuggets of his “wisdom of the ages” and inflict us with it.

Benjamin Buensuceso
Guest
Very true, great article. Noynoy has to use the same standards he set for his enemies (Gloria, Corona) on himself or come off a gigantic hypocrite. But in fairness to him, the amount he was comparing to the 700M fertilizer scam was the ~83M that the department of agriculture appropriated for Napoles’ supposedly bogus NGOs 2 years ago, not the 10B number that’s been thrown around. 83 million is still 83 million though, and is actually bigger than the un-accounted for money in the fertilizer scam during Gloria’s administration. Bit of misleading reporting by GMA there, taking him out of… Read more »
Gerry
Guest

Why do YOU think they (Arroyo, Corona) are this guys enemies? isn’t it OBVIOUS they have not gone to jail, never been prosecuted, not a single FUCKIN peso has been returned!

U think that what has happened is how ‘ENEMIES’ are treated? R U fuckin kidding?

B.B., B.B. when ‘enemies’ are given get out of jail free cards. Do I REALLY have to spell it out for you? HINT: the laughing you hear, is REAL!

jonphil
Guest

Where are the members of the “Black and White Movement..?” Spot on, ilda.

This’ a more balanced article compared to the one-flavored 5-pc blog of paul.

Re 10B-728M comparison, if i recall correctly, pnoy mentioned DA alcala’s 90M as peanuts relative to zte’s 728M. He even went as far as claiming 19M being misheard as 90M by his critics.

Regardless of amount, the pres was resorting to strawman reasoning – w/c he & his mounthpiece (comm grp) are known for.

Gerry
Guest
Show me a single politician in the country who has truly ‘ANSWERED FOR HIS/HER TRANSGRESSIONS’, just show me ONE! One that has gone to an actual provincial PRISON(and served a sentence commensurate with the charges) and/or paid back any ‘ILL-GOTTEN’ wealth. WAIT, no one can accomplish that simple little task? Why or rather HOW could that possibly be? The imaginary ‘HOLD’ on certain other politicians is ,in reality, a ‘FANTASY’. Dreamed up by those who think there are two, or three or even more sides in the political landscape. Once this ‘FANTASY’ is understood, the picture/situation becomes a little more… Read more »
Gerry
Guest

it is TRULY LAUGHABLE that anyone fails to understand WHY the DOJ and the Senators are ‘POWERLESS’ to do anything. is it even a MYSTERY? at this point? R U FUCKIN KIDDIN?
another TRULY LAUGHABLE assertion is that ‘the only way to end this is to remove the problem, the PDAF’, LMAO!
sadly, that is NOT EVEN CLOSE, but an ‘A’ for hearfelt effort, as useless as that is.

Secret
Guest
that is because ‘kung walang korap walang mahirap’ is only a sales pitch and noynoy running for presidency out of thin air has more to do with hacienda luisita than anything. you can see GMA and Corona being punished for the supposed crimes they are guilty of but you can also see that these 2 people are connected with irrevocably returning back the hacienda luisita to the the farmers who truly own it. now, after a supreme court decision, the farmers got the losing end of the deal since what the government proposed would look like something out of a… Read more »
Benjo
Guest

From the looks of your post MAYBE you understand that the Fox is in the hen house and its Party time?
Dream on…..

Pepito
Guest

So if you are wearing President Aquino’s shoes, what would you do to correct the situation?

Pepito
Guest

It’s very interesting info reading your column. But if you were President Aquino, what should you do to correct the situation?

Pepito
Guest

To me President Pnoy is the best we can get. Though maybe he had bad decisions or can’t control those vultures under him but at least he is trying to cleanse the government.Like the BOC, Sec. R. Biazon recommend to totally abolish or dissolve the department and have all employees retired then create a new one staffed with private professionals and employees and all transactions will be under computer operation.That way corruptions (Kutongs and Lagays) will be avoided.

Johnny Saint
Guest
As a citizen, what I want is for the president to stop his dramatics, do his job and enforce the law. Case in point — the BOC. The Lateral Attrition Act of 2005 governs the Bureau of Customs. The act rewards and punishes officers and employees of the BOC (and the BIR) for meeting or missing their collection targets. If they exceed their targets by up to 30% they get 15% of the excess. Anything above 30% and they get a 20% cut. The rewards are to be divided among the qualifying employees based on the proportion of their contribution.… Read more »
Pro noynoy
Guest

Talking about BIR,how do we know if they really paying the right taxes.The only Bureau that nobody check their hidden activities.

libertas
Guest

Abolish pdaf/pork barrel
Implement FoI
Remove 60/40 constraint.

It would only take these 3 measures to radically change the political, economic, and social landscape in the philippines for the better.

Pnoy pissing around and doung nothing is achieving nothing of significance as underlined by tge fact that poverty, unemployment, and corruption have all increased under his blind watch

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