News Flash

August 31, 2015, Monday
  • CBCP calls on Catholics not to support same-sex marriage. 2 hours ago |
  • 5 mountaineers drown in Nagsasa Creek in San Jose, Tarlac on Monday afternoon. 3 hours ago |
  • Phivolcs records 5 tremors in areas in Southern Mindanao. 3 hours ago |
  • Petron to implement a P 2.25/kilo rollback on the price of LPG on Tuesday. 3 hours ago |
  • Sandiganbayan issues hold departure orders vs. Fmr. Agusan Del Sur Rep. Rodolfo Plaza & 7 others linked to pork barrel scam. 3 hours ago |
  • Binay’s camp claims De Lima is prioritizing political ambition over the resolution of PDAF and SAF 44 cases. 3 hours ago |
  • Binay’s camp calls on Justice Sec. Leila de Lima to resign. 3 hours ago |
  • DILG Sec. Mar Roxas says gov’t & INC leaders have been in contact with one another since the beginning of the rally at DOJ. 3 hours ago |
  • Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda says INC’s protest peacefully ended through goodwill and convergence of efforts. 3 hours ago |
  • Deputy Pres’l Spokesperson Abigail Valte says talks between gov’t & INC centered on clarification of issues & concerns. 3 hours ago |
  • Palace says there has been no deal made between gov’t and Iglesia ni Cristo. 3 hours ago |
  • Pres. Aquino led the National Heroes’ Day commemoration at the Libingan ng mga Bayani in Taguig City. 8 hours ago |
  • Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda thanks the INC for ending its 5-day protest rally. 8 hours ago |
  • 9 killed in a collision between a multicab & a truck before dawn Monday in Tacurong City, Sultan Kudarat. 8 hours ago |
  • Pres. Aquino calls on people to unite & set aside personal interests during his message on National Heroes’ Day. 8 hours ago |
  • Bayan Muna Party-list Rep. Neri Colmenares says the right of expelled INC Minister Isaias Samson Jr. to file a complaint must be respected. 8 hours ago |
  • CIBAC Party-list Rep. Sherwin Tugna says DOJ must continue hearing the complaint of expelled INC Minister Isaias Samson Jr. 8 hours ago |
  • Fire kills 6 stay-in workers in a bakery in Taal, Batangas. 8 hours ago |
  • Clean-up of area around EDSA-Shaw Boulevard ongoing following 5 days of INC’s protest. 8 hours ago |
  • Traffic flow now moving along EDSA-Shaw Boulevard in Mandaluyong City. 8 hours ago |
  • Some INC members still trooped to DOJ early Monday morning & left only after INC’s announcement that the protest was over. 8 hours ago |
  • Commuters who were at EDSA-Mandaluyong area about 6 am Monday experienced monstrous traffic jam due to INC rally. 8 hours ago |
  • INC members rejoiced upon hearing their leaders’ announcement at about 8 am Monday that they are ending the protest. 9 hours ago |
  • LRTA says the remaining value stored in the magnetic cards can be transferred to beep cards. 9 hours ago |
  • LRT-2 removes from all its stations the gates for magnetic cards as it paves the way for beep cards. 9 hours ago |
  • Registration for 2016 polls continues in selected malls in the provinces. 9 hours ago |
  • Comelec reminds public to register for 2016 elections before deadline comes on October 31. 9 hours ago |
  • Rains forecast over Central Luzon, Bicol, Isabela, Quirino, Rizal and Quezon. 9 hours ago |
  • Possibility of the LPA near Baler, Aurora developing into a storm remote. 9 hours ago |
  • LPA located at sea 390 kms. east southeast of Baler, Aurora. 9 hours ago |
  • INC evangelist Bienvenido Santiago says INC is concluding its protest as it has reached an understanding with gov’t. 9 hours ago |
  • Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) ends its protest at EDSA-Shaw Boulevard in Mandaluyong City. 9 hours ago |

Guilt by socialization

By MST News | Sep. 12, 2013 at 12:01am
Guilt by socializationThe latest government personality to be exposed to have links with Janet Lim-Napoles, the woman allegedly behind the P10-billion pork barrel scam, is no less than Senate President and Liberal Party stalwart Franklin Drilon.

A photo of Drilon and his wife at a party with Napoles and her husband surfaced this week.

The Senate President immediately issued a statement, claiming that while he indeed socialized with the Napoleses “no more than ten times,” not a single centavo of his Priority Development Assistance Fund went to any of the non-government organizations and foundations set up by Mrs. Napoles.

He even said that all politicians always find themselves flanked by people who want to have their picture taken with them.

Earlier, photos of Sandiganbayan Associate Justice Gregory Ong partying with Napoles also made the rounds of social media. Ong said it was a random meeting and he did not know Napoles personally.  This would not have been as controversial had he not been chairman of the Sandiganbayan’s fourth division which handled the Kevlar helmet anomaly where the Napoleses were involved years ago. Napoles was acquitted in that case.

Then, too, a career official of the Department of Agrarian Reform, Finance and Management Director Teresita Panlilio, was seen donned in white and dancing the boogie at the posh 21st birthday party of Napoles’ daughter Jeane at a Beverly Hills hotel.

Many weeks ago, photos of Senators Bong Revilla and Jinggoy Estrada and Rep. Lani Mercado Revilla caused them to be pilloried in social media.  They insisted that they barely knew the businesswoman.

The names of Revilla and Estrada are also repeatedly mentioned in the Commission on Audit report detailing how some lawmakers channelled substantial amounts of their pork barrel to the bogus NGOs.

These officials say one picture cannot be used as basis to gauge the closeness of their relationship to Mrs. Napoles.

Of course a picture is a just that—a single moment captured.  People have their pictures taken all the time, and perhaps in these elite circles, it is not necessary that a deep friendship or a close association be present for the parties to grin widely as though being with each other gave them utter joy.

As always, context is key. Answers to seemingly trivial questions—what the occasion was, who threw the party, who else was present and why those invited were in fact invited—would be crucial.

These officials cannot blame the public for doubting what they say in defense of themselves. We have had enough politicians loudly denouncing practices that they themselves are engaged in.

We enjoin all those in possession of other similar photographs to make these pictures available through various media forms. Determining who have been shamelessly robbing us, and by how much, may take a while. But with these photographs, those who will attempt to grandstand and pretend to be spotless will be exposed for their hypocrisy.
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