MANILA (Mabuhay) – Other media workers who allegedly benefitted from the multibillion pork barrel scam have come forward to deny the accusation.
Aside from Mike Enriquez and Korina Sanchez of GMA Network and ABS-CBN, respectively, radio announcer Rey Pacheco and TV5 news and public affairs head Luchi Cruz-Valdez dismissed the Philippine Daily Inquirer report linking them to the scam.
“Kaugnay sa balitang lumabas sa Inquirer, ako ay na-shock at nalulungkot. Pero para sa kaalaman ng lahat: Una, wala akong natanggap na pera mula kay Mrs. Napoles batay sa listahan ni Benhur Luy. Pangalawa, hindi ko siya kilala at hindi ko makita ang dahilan kung bakit nasama ako sa kanyang listahan,” said Pacheco in a statement.
The Inquirer report, which came out Sunday, listed names of media personalities who allegedly received payoffs from detained businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles, tagged as the scam’s mastermind. It said Pacheco received P715,000 from Napoles from 2004 to 2008.
The Inquirer cited the files provided by pork barrel scam whistleblower Benhur Luy, a former employee in Napoles’ JLN Corp., as the source of its report. The files were reportedly contained in a hard drive that Luy’s parents gave to the Inquirer.
Valdez, for her part, denied personally knowing both Luy and Napoles.
“I deny and denounce any imputation or suggestion that I benefitted in any way from the PDAF Funds facilitated by Mr. Benhur Luy. I have not even met Mr. Luy, Ms. Janet Liim-Napoles, or anyone from JLN Corp,” she said in a separate statement.
“For the record, the Philippine Daily Inquirer should be aware that, in the period of 2004-2008… I was no longer part of [Probe Team],” she added.
Based on the newspaper report, Luy supposedly paid out “representation expense for Luchi Cruz of Probe Team charge from COA (Commission on Audit) reports on NGOs (sic).”
“I denounce the reckless inclusion of my name in a list that has no legal legs to stand on,” Valdez said.
Meanwhile, lawyer Richard Cambe, a senior staff member of Sen. Bong Revilla, one of the senators implicated in the scam, cried foul over his name’s inclusion in the newspaper report. He allegedly received P660,000 payoff from Luy and Napoles.
“Atty. Richard Cambe did not receive P660,000 as supposed budget for media in 2008 or any amount at any point in time from Benhur Luy or Ms. Napoles,” said Cambe’s legal counsel, Michael Ancheta. (MNS)