MANILA (Mabuhay) – Controversial businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles on Tuesday denied implicating Manila Rep. Amado Bagatsing to the alleged P10-billion pork barrel scam.
“Allow me to clarify at the outset that I never stated that Rep. Bagatsing received or authorized anyone to receive on his behalf rebate or commission from PDAF (Priority Development Assistance Fund) transactions involving any NGO connected with me,” lawyer Bruce Rivera said, reading Napoles’ statement.
“There was never anything in the statement that I ever stated or insinuated that Rep. Bagatsing was directly or indirectly involved or participated in the rebate,” the statement added, noting that Napoles has not even met the lawmaker.
Earlier in June, Bagatsing filed a perjury complaint against Napoles for dragging him into the alleged pork barrel scam.
Bagatsing filed the complaint against Napoles for mentioning him in her May 26 affidavit as among those who earned kickbacks from the misuse of PDAF allocations.
An earlier statement from his office quoted Bagatsing as denying any involvement in the scam, noting that he was not yet a lawmaker when the alleged anomaly occurred.
“He could not have implemented a project involving the use of PDAF in 2007 as he assumed his position as Congressman only June 30, 2007 and the first PDAF allocated to his district was released by the [Department of Budget and Management] through the Landbank only on January 2, 2008,” the statement said.
For his part, Rivera said their camp is hoping that Bagatsing would withdraw the case now that they have issued a clarification.
Last May 26, Napoles turned over to the Department of Justice her completed and extended affidavit on the P10-billion pork barrel fund scam containing new names of senators and congressmen supposedly involved in the alleged scam.
Napoles, who is facing plunder and graft charges before the Sandiganbayan, submitted the affidavit to the government as part of her application to be considered a state witness. (MNS)