NBI not done with verification of lawmakers on ‘Napolist’

By , on November 9, 2014

Alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles. Photo from Sen. Bam Aquino's official Facebook page.
Alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles. Photo from Sen. Bam Aquino’s official Facebook page.

MANILA, Philippines— Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said on Friday that the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has yet to finish the verification process of the list submitted by pork barrel scam alleged mastermind Janet Lim Napoles, implicating several incumbent as well as former lawmakers in the P10-billion ruse.

De Lima had initially given the NBI until August of this year to determine which of the lawmakers redirected their Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) allotments to bogus nongovernment organizations created by Napoles.

“There’s an ongoing verification or validation of that list. We are confirming who on that list really had dealings with Napoles through her NGOs,” De Lima said to reporters.

The verification process involves cross-checking Napoles’ list against special allotment release orders (Saros) from the budget department. The Saros provide a record of the funds released from the lawmakers’ PDAF or pork barrel allotments.

De Lima said that she will follow-up on the , but pointed out that it is not an easy task to gather the Saros

“I gave the NBI another month to complete the gathering of the Saros because when I followed up with the team, they said it was still not complete, especially those of the congressmen, because the list is long,” she said.

“So I’ll follow it up again, because the one-month (extension) has already lapsed,” she said.

Napoles’ affidavit and list, also known as the “Napolist”, released in April last year implicated nine incumbent senators in the scam: Senators Juan Ponce Enrile, Bong Revilla and Jinggoy Estrada (all three of whom are currently detained for charges of plunder and graft), Senators Alan Peter Cayetano, Francis Escudero, Gringo Honasan, Loren Legarda, Aquilino Pimentel III and Vicente Sotto III. Napoles’ list also included former Senators Manny Villar and the late Robert Barbers.

The list likewise included 69 former and incumbent lawmakers.