Romualdez welcomes Senate Malampaya fund probe
• December 5, 2014
• Written by Ryan Ponce Pacpaco
• Published in Top Stories
THE House independent bloc headed by Leyte (lst District) Rep. Martin G. Romualdez yesterday called on the concerned investigating bodies not to be color-blind in its inquiry on the alleged Malampaya Fund scam.
Romualdez welcomed the Senate blue ribbon committee investigation of the controversial use of the Malampaya Fund, but stressed that the inquiry should also cover the releases made during the Aquino administration. “There should be no selective prosecution here. The investigation should cover everything, all the releases made during the previous and present governments,” Romualdez pointed out.
Romualdez lamented that only members of the opposition are purportedly the usual targets of various investigations. “Well obviously, (selective prosecution) has been occurring ever since and that is our concern. We have no problems of the review of the P900 million of the Malampaya Fund problem of the previous administration, but it should also cover the billions of pesos that have already been released by this current administration,” said Romualdez. “With no accounting thereon and there have been large disbursements to what the administration allegedly calls as energy-related development projects or acquisitions,” he said. Earlier, Romualdez asked Speaker Feliciano “Sonny” Belmonte Jr. to call alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim Napoles and the heads of agencies either in a committee hearing or in a question hour to explain how the questionable releases from the Malampaya Funds were spent.
Romualdez said that Napoles and agency heads owe the Filipino people an immediate explanation on the questionable releases as revealed by no less than Commission on Audit (COA) chairperson Grace Pulido Tan.
Abakada party-list Rep. Jonathan de la Cruz and Buhay Hayaang Yumabong (Buhay) party-list Rep. Lito Atienza said that the people must find out immediately if the Malampaya Fund releases had indeed been spent on the target beneficiaries or had just gone straight to the pockets of corrupt government personnel. “Especially the three biggest Malampaya releases which were received by the Departments of National Defense, P7.456 billion; Agriculture (DA), P5.8 billion; Public Works and Highways (DPWH), P7.6 billion; and Interior and Local Government (DILG), P2.3 billion,” they said.
Romualdez also demanded an explanation from Tan on why she only cited the DND, National Electrification (NEA), National Power Corporation (Napocor), and Department of Energy (DoE) as recipients of Malampaya Fund releases under the Aquino administration.