Super body

A thorough government probe into the misuse of billions of pesos in "pork barrel" or Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) has begun.

Time to scrutinize deeper the rotting "pork barrel."

***

The Commission on Audit (COA) has submitted its audit findings on the misuse of the "pork barrel" funds to the Office of the Ombudsman and the Department of Justice for the filing of administrative or criminal charges against persons involved, including lawmakers and public officials.

Time to charge "pork" thieves and violators. COA confirms: May kumuha!

***

Commission on Audit Chairperson Grace Pulido Tan, who has also given copies of the report to the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) for taxation purposes, said that magnitude of the anomalies in the allocation and use of the R101-billion "pork barrel" funds between 2007 and 2009 alone is alarming.

It's unconscionable or "kahindik-hindik," she says.

***

Justice Secretary Leila de Lima adds that the COA report "supports and enhances" NBI's findings on the more recent Janet Lim-Napoles and NGO transactions allegedly involving another R10 billion in "pork barrel" and linking several lawmakers and other public officials.

More evidence and slime to probe the "pork barrel scam."

***

De Lima has also proposed the creation of a "super body" involving the DOJ, NBI, and the COA to jointly cover a much "wider web of anomalies surrounding the pork barrel releases."

Yes to super body vs. super scam, if necessary. But no diversion of attention or washing of the hands.

***

Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago and Sen. Chiz Escudero have called for the immediate abolition of the "pork barrel' from the national budget.

"What we read (in the news) is nauseating. The lawmakers who placed their PDAF in NGOs which they own or are operated by their relatives are more deplorable compared to (the case of) Napoles," decries Escudero.

Rotting "pork" is nauseating, complains Chiz. Ang baho!

***

President Aquino III and Senate Pres. Franklin Drilon have called for the adoption of "safeguards" and "reforms" in the release and use of the PDAF funds, saying realities at the grassroots would make it hard to abolish it now.

Let the "pork barrel" roll but with safeguards, they say.

***

Meanwhile, congressmen cited as getting R3 billion in pork barrel funds have submitted their explanations and denials to COA and media.

"Pork" issue tarnished their integrity, they say.Tsk-tsk!

***

The Court of Appeals has frozen a total of 415 accounts of businesswoman Janet Lim Napoles, who has been linked to the R10-billion pork barrel scam and the alleged kidnapping of whistle-blower Benhur Luy.

CA orders: Freeze that part of the "pork."

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has likewise cancelled the passport of Napoles on De Lima's request.

DFA says: Don't let the "pork barrel" suspect roll out of sight. Whew!

***

Napoles, for her part, has filed a petition before the CA to lift the arrest order and nullify the charges against her.

Napoles cries: Huwag niyo akong ipapulis!

***

Meanwhile, while the "pork" issue gripped the country, Typhoon Maring and its 'habagat' aftermath battered the country, leaving multi-millions of pesos in damage and eight persons dead.

Observers note: After Cardinal Tagle and COA Chair Pulido-Tan cried over the "pork barrel" misuse, the heavens also cried. Tsk-tsk!

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