MAKATI — Makati Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 150 Presiding Judge Elmo Alameda on Wednesday reset the hearing on the motion to extend the stay of alleged P10-billion pork barrel fund scam mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles inside the Ospital ng Makati (OsMak).
The court is handling the serious illegal detention case, a non-bailable offense, of Napoles.
Napoles has been confined at OsMak since March 31.
During the Wednesday hearing, Judge Alameda reset the hearing on Thursday 2:00 p.m. and summoned the Osmak Medical Director Perry Peralta and Dr. Elsie Badillo-Pascua, Napoles obstetrician-gynecologists to substantiate the motion asking extension on the stay of Napoles at Osmak so she can have regular check-ups and fully recover from the operation that removed her uterus and ovaries.
Alameda said the stay of Napoles in the hospital is already overdue.
He added that it would be more economical if the doctors will conduct check-up at the Fort Sto. Domingo.
Prosecutors led by Senior Assistant City Prosecutor Christopher Garvida said that they (the defense lawyers) are the ones who filed the motion which should be supported by factual evidences and confirmed by the attending doctors.
He said the operation took place on April 23 and according to the doctors, the recovery of Napoles requires 26 days. Counting from the date of the operation, Napoles has four more days to complete her checkups/examinations.
Napoles defense lawyer, filed a six-page motion asking the Makati City regional trial court branch 150, for an additional period of confinement in the hospital until her series of checkups/examinations are completed.
“It is imperative for Napoles to have a regular and routinary medical check-up, the schedule of which is, as follows: once a week for one month, once every two weeks, and once a month thereafter,” the motion stated.
For his part, Atty. Bruce Rivera, one of the legal counsel of Napoles, said if Napoles gets transferred to Fort Sto. Domingo she might not get proper treatment because appropriate medical facilities are not provided in the detention place.
Rivera said that if Napoles is sent back to Fort Sto. Domingo, it would cost as much as P120,000.
“So we already know that it would be expensive as she needs guards to secure her and everything. The government will be spending P120,000 as I’ve heard just to transport her every week. Kung I compare mo na dun lang sya sa Opsital ng Makati nakastay, it would be cheaper by a mile. That is our position. It is not just more cost efficient because the doctors would need facilities of the hospital to check the wounds inside,” he explained
He added that the Napoles’ internal wounds will take time to heal, that is why they asked for the extension of her hospital confinement.
“We cannot give a time frame. Hind siya (Napoles) pwedeng mag bend. Yung wound nya sa loob ay mas malaki. At the end of the day, she wants to recuperate properly. We do not plan to have a long recuperation. All we want is for her to recuperate properly,” Rivera said.
The legal counsel contested during the hearing that the attending physicians of Napoles advised not to bend when taking a bath because the ‘inside wound’ has to be taken care of to completely heal though the ‘outside wound’ is already healed.
”I talked to the doctors and they told me that it is not the outside wound that should be looked at. The outside wound is already healed. However, the inside wound needs to be checked and you cannot do that with a physical examination. You have to use other medical facilities for that so she needs to stay in the hospital,” Atty. Rivera expounded.
“If it is a physical wound, it is easy to check at Sto. Domingo. You can just open her stomach and see if it [is] healed or not. However, this is a total hysterectomy,” he added.
Once she fully recovers, Napoles will be brought back to Fort Sto. Domingo in Sta. Rosa Laguna, where she has been detained for her serious illegal detention case filed by pork barrel fund scam whistleblower Benhur Luy.
Apart from the serious illegal detention case, she is also facing plunder charges in connection with the alleged pork barrel scam together with some senators and government officials.