Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago. – Photo by inquirer.net

MANILA, PHILIPPINES – Lawmakers involved in pork barrel scam will face immediate suspension if prosecutors decide to file a case, Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago said in her speech at the  SMX Convention Center, Monday.

Santiago also said that in the 1991 Anti-Plunder Act, any public officer facing criminal  prosecution pending in court shall be suspended from office.

She added that if the evidence of guilt against them is strong, then they’ll have to stay in jail for the duration of the trial.

Recently, several lawmakers were named to have allegedly permitted the transfer of their Priority Development Fund (PDAF) to bogus nongovernment organizations.

“P’wede ka nga magbigay ng pera sa NGO pero may kondisyon ‘yan: public bidding o negotiated procurement. Wala silang ganun,” (You can give funds to an NGO but with the condition: do it either via public budding or a negotiated procurement. None of that happened.) Santiago expressed.

She also added that the PDAF or other sources of appropriation should be released to an implementing agency and never to an NGO.

Written by:

Hanna Bartolome
ABCom, Leyte Normal University