Palace accepts court ruling

December 07, 2018
Salvador Panelo
Salvador Panelo

THE Sandiganbayan has performed its constitutional duty of dispensing justice, and Malacañang abides by the anti-graft court’s decision on those accused of plunder in the multi-billion-peso pork barrel fund scam, a Palace official said yesterday.

“The court has spoken and the Palace abides by its decision finding Ms. Janet Lim Napoles and Mr. Richard Cambe guilty and former Senator Ramon ‘Bong’ Revilla not liable for plunder in relation to the pork barrel scam,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a statement to Palace reporters.

“Regardless of the sentiments to the contrary, we have to bow down to the judgment of the Sandiganbayan,” he said.

The judiciary has performed its constitutional duty of dispensing justice, Panelo added.

“While justice grinds so slow most of the time, it does grind. And when it stops, it renders a verdict that is exacting and immutable,” Panelo said.

Revilla has been detained at the Philippine National Police Custodial Center in Camp Crame since June 20, 2014 after the Sandiganbayan ordered his arrest.

Revilla has been accused of amassing P224.5 million worth of ill-gotten wealth by channeling his Priority Development Assistant Fund, or pork barrel, to bogus foundations linked to Napoles—a scheme that supposedly took place from 2006 to 2010.

The Palace has consistently respected the independence of the Judiciary and “will continue to do so in this case as we implement the final orders of the anti-graft court on the matter,” Panelo said.

“Nevertheless, we note that either party, whether for the prosecution or the defense, who feels aggrieved of the decision may still pursue remedies available under our procedural laws,” he said.