MANILA — Justice Secretary Leila M. De Lima on Tuesday said that she will ask Justice Undersecretary Jose Justiniano to give his final recommendations on the third batch of cases in connection with the priority development assistance fund (PDAF) scam.
Likewise, De Lima denied issuing any statement saying that the third batch of cases is “no longer” a priority of the Department of Justice (DOJ).
“I’d like to take this opportunity to say that I’m not saying that it is not a priority, only that I have many priorities,” De Lima said.
”I just couldn’t focus, although I assigned that already to Usec. [Justiniano]… he is busy; almost every day he is in Sandiganbayan,” she said.
”I will meet Usec. [Justiniano] this (Tuesday) afternoon and I will ask him to give me already a final recommendation…. especially with the review on fake signatures,” De Lima said.
The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has already filed two batches of complaints before the Office of the Ombudsman (Ombudsman) in connection with the PDAF scam involving non-government organizations (NGOs) linked to detained businesswoman Janet Lim Napoles, the suspected “brains” behind the Php10-billion pork barrel and the Php900-million Malampaya Fund scams.
Some of the PDAF scam cases are now pending before the Sandiganbayan, including those against detained Senators Juan Ponce Enrile, Ramon “Bong” Revilla, Jr. and Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada, and several other lawmakers.