The Inbox

Why is Aquino not helping Lozada

Commentary

Jun Lozada, Cory Aquino and the nuns

By Ellen Tordesillas

While waiting for the arrest warrant issued by the Sandiganbayan Fourth Division to be served to Rodolfo “Jun” Lozada, the government’s star witness in the NBN/ZTE plunder case against Gloria Arroyo, members of the Association of Major Religious Superiors of the Philippines wrote the Police Chief Alan Purisima requesting, among others, to make sure that “no untoward incident” would happen.

The nuns must be thinking of last month’s incident in Batangas when Fernando Morales , allegedly linked with Vic Siman who was among those killed in the Atimonan massacre, was killed while policemen were serving his arrest warrant for illegal possession of firearms.

Morales was in his underwear and was dragged out of his house at 1:30 a.m.

The arrest warrant for Lozada had nothing to do with NBN/ZTE. It’s for his alleged violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act for allegedly awarding the leasehold right of a 6,599 hectare land to his brother Jose Orlando Lozada when he was still president of the Philippine Forest Corporation, a government-owned corporation.

Jose Orlando availed of a board-approved program of the PFC.

A P30,000 bail each was set for the temporary liberty of Lozada and his brother. Lozada has returned to the sanctuary of the Religious again, just like when he was testifying on the $320 million telecommunications deal, one of the biggest scandals in the Arroyo administrations.

Last Wednesday, the nuns who support Lozada met with Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, Social Services Dinky Soliman and Education Secretary Armin Luistro.

It will be recalled that the La Salle Religious community, of which Luistro was a member, provided Lozada and his family sanctuary when Gloria Arroyo was in power. Luistro together with Soliman actively supported Lozada’s crusade against Arroyo. Press Secretary Edwin Lacierda was Lozada’s lawyer.

The nuns complained why Erwin Santos, who was Arroyo hatchet man against Lozada, continues to be president of PFC.

Sources said the cabinet members told the nuns that Lozada is “out of President Aquino’s hands.” The appointment of Santos is the responsibility of Cesar L.Villanueva, chairman of Governance Commission for Government-owned- and -controlled Corporations.

The nuns, it seems, are not satisfied with the explanation because they are seeking an audience with the President.

Supporters of Aquino who marched with Lozada against Arroyo are puzzled with Aquino’s distant, even adverse, attitude towards the whistleblower. The President had intervened directly in the case of Grace Padaca, even paying with his own money for her bail. The DOJ removed from the list of accused in the Ampatuan massacre the name of Norie Unas, the chief of staff of former Maguindanao Governor Andal Ampatuan Sr., whom they used as star witness against Arroyo in the hastily- prepared electoral sabotage case.

Lozada’s friends wonder if Aquino’ attitude could have something to do with Lozada not consenting to his request in February 2008 for him (Aquino, who was then senator) to fetch the former in Hongkong, where he was told by then Environment Secretary Lito Atienza to hide so he could not testify in the Senate investigation of the NBN/ZTE deal.

It would have been a chance for Aquino, who had a lackluster record as senator, to shine.

Actually, it was not only Aquino who Lozada turned down. A number of politicians, businessmen, lawyers, and members of media offered but his decision was he would only go with the Religious.

Which was what he did when he surfaced after being waylaid by police authorities upon his arrival from Hongkong.

In the course of his testimony in the NBN/ZTE case, Lozada stepped on powerful toes who continue to wield clout even with the change of political leadership.. That what he and his family is concerned about. They still remember Marlene Esperat, the star witness in the Fertilizer scam who was gunned down in front of her children.

Lozada said he will abide by the law. He is not running from justice. He is just being careful.

Other Interesting Blog Posts from Vera Files:

https://ph.news.yahoo.com/blogs/the-inbox/lozada-finds-no-support-aquino-145215812.html

https://ph.news.yahoo.com/blogs/the-inbox/weakest-megamall-heist-033819633.html

https://ph.news.yahoo.com/blogs/the-inbox/employees-sue-dar-bids-committee-chief-overpriced-luisita-101428643.html

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Philippine, Vietnam troops play sports on disputed island
    Philippine, Vietnam troops play sports on disputed island

    Filipino and Vietnamese troops played football and tug-of-war on a disputed South China Sea island on Wednesday, officials said, closing ranks as their rival China ramps up construction of artificial islands. The games took place on Philippine-held Northeast Cay, just 2.7 kilometres (1.7 miles) from Southwest Cay which is controlled by Vietnam, where a similar contest was held last year. "It was a navy-to-navy confidence-building engagement," Vice Admiral Alexander Lopez, the Philippine …

  • ‘Inland areas could be exposed to tsunami-like waves’
    ‘Inland areas could be exposed to tsunami-like waves’

    While strong earthquakes cause tsunamis in coastal areas, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) warned that inland areas could also be exposed to tsunami-like waves, or seiche, if located near or around bodies of water. In a recent earthquake awareness seminar in Muntinlupa, Phivolcs supervising science research specialist Joan Salcedo explained that a seiche is a large wave similar to a tsunami, triggered by strong ground shaking from an earthquake or volcanic …

  • China gives ‘gentle reminder’ to Phl, warns small nations
    China gives ‘gentle reminder’ to Phl, warns small nations

    China gave the Philippines a “gentle reminder” last Tuesday that Beijing will not bully small countries but warned these nations not to make trouble willfully and endlessly. “Here is a gentle reminder to the Philippines: China will not bully small countries, meanwhile, small countries shall not make trouble willfully and endlessly. The Chinese Foreign Ministry also said that China would continue to build other civilian facilities on relevant maritime features in the disputed Spratly Islands …

  • Back-channel diplomacy pushed for Phl-China dispute
    Back-channel diplomacy pushed for Phl-China dispute

    The Philippines should consider backchannel diplomacy to prevent its territorial dispute with China from deteriorating further, Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said yesterday. There are a lot of Filipino businessmen with businesses in China and they have friends and connections there. Let’s utilize that, ask them to talk to their friends on how we can resolve this matter peacefully,” Marcos said. …

  • Phl, Japan to deepen ties amid China sea claims
    Phl, Japan to deepen ties amid China sea claims

    Japan and the Philippines are set to bolster security ties when President Benigno Aquino visits Tokyo next week, the latest move by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to beef up cooperation with Southeast Asian nations facing China’s growing naval ambitions. The two sides will likely agree to start talks on a framework for the transfer of defense equipment and technology and to discuss a possible pact on the status of Japanese military personnel visiting the Philippines to facilitate joint training and …

  • Phl, Vietnam troops play soccer on disputed isle
    Phl, Vietnam troops play soccer on disputed isle

    Vietnamese and Philippine troops played soccer and sang karaoke on a South China Sea island yesterday in a sign of the growing security ties between the two Southeast Asian nations most at odds with Beijing over the contested waterway. Cooperation has blossomed between Hanoi and Manila since they shelved decades of enmity over their competing claims in the Spratly archipelago to try to counter China, whose creation of artificial islands in the region will allow it to project power deep into …

  • Noy swears in 50 newly appointed AFP officers
    Noy swears in 50 newly appointed AFP officers

    President Aquino administered yesterday the oath taking of 50 newly appointed generals and officers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in a simple ceremony at the Rizal Hall of Malacañang Palace. …

  • Taiwan’s peace call on claimants of disputed territories welcomed
    Taiwan’s peace call on claimants of disputed territories welcomed

    The US on Tuesday welcomed Taiwan’s call on all claimants to disputed shoals, reefs, rocks and islets in the South China Sea and West Philippine Sea to exercise restraint, refrain from unilateral actions that could escalate tensions, as well as to respect international law as reflected in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. “With regard to the maritime claims and the claims to sovereignty over land features in the South China Sea, our position is that maritime claims must …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options