Palace denies involvement on release of Napoles list

By , on May 22, 2014

Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda. Screenshot from May 14 press briefing.
Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda. Screenshot from May 14 press briefing.

MANILA — Despite allegations of creating cover-up to protect its allies, Malacanang firmly denies any involvement behind the alleged disclosure of various Napoles lists.

“Is it something that is logical for someone to say that we are the perpetrators of the release of the list where we placed in that particular list the names of those who are in the Cabinet? That seems to be an illogical statement. It doesn’t make sense,” Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda said in a Palace press briefing.

United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) secretary general Toby Tiangco has earlier accused the administration of confusing the public and protecting its allies by releasing several versions of the Napoles list.

This according to Tiangco is quite similar to the “Hello Garci” cover-up in 2005 created by the administration to create nuisance to the public.

Lacierda however, dismissed the allegations made by Tiangco as something that “do not make sense” since he explained that some administration allies were also included in the lists of politicians created by Janet Lim Napoles.

‘Allies’ still trustworthy 

While several members of the administration were implicated in the list including Budget Secretary Florencio Abad,

Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) chief Joel Villanueva, the President still maintained his trust saying they are all innocent until proven guilty.

“And again, we are looking at this based on the instruction given by the President on: ‘Let’s look for the evidence, and where the evidence leads, that’s where we’re going,’” he said.

Lacierda also maintained the president’s order to wait for the verification of the list by the Department of Justice adding that the justice department, though has received the initial affidavit of Napoles, is still waiting for the “extended affidavit”

“The DOJ is still not in the possession of that extended affidavit. We’re only going to evaluate to whatever signed and sworn affidavit that Ms. Napoles submits to the DOJ. That’s the only thing that we’re going to consider,” he said.

With Reports from Genalyn Kabiling