MANILA, Philippines – President Aquino hit Chief Justice Renato Corona anew, this time, at the commencement exercises of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) Bagwis Class 2012.
“More than rebels and lawless elements, be wary of the enemy called corruption,” he said during his speech in Baguio City on Sunday, March 18.
The impeachment trial against Corona is seen as part of Aquino’s anti-corruption advocacy. Corona is on trial for failing to declare his true wealth in his Statement of Assests, Liabilities and Networth (Saln), among others.
“What’s the use of owning extravagant houses if in exchange for these is a lifetime of questions and doubts cast by your own countrymen?” Aquino said in Filipino, apparently alluding to the number of properties of Corona, part of the Chief Justice’s alleged unexplained wealth, which is one of the subjects under intense scrutiny by the impeachment court.
The President then continued to hint on an another topic closely associated to the Chief Justice’s impeachment: Corona’s local and foreign bank accounts that are being questioned when he has refused to disclose.
“You will accumulate millions of riches but you could hardly spend them since these may lead you to jail for spending people’s money, so you just end up hiding it,” Aquino said, drawing applause from the audience.
“But despite your efforts to conceal it, they were eventually uncovered,” he said.
The President’s speech elicited cheers when said the unexplained wealth of quite a number of public officials have been accounted for by the government.
Aquino said that the AFP has benefitted from the present administration’s anti-graft programs, resulting to more transparent spendings and savings in various projects.
These include better housing programs for soldiers and policemen, including those from other government agencies and additional equipment and facilities that the AFP badly needs in the conduct of their security operations.
He also boasted electrifying 36,000 communities, which accordingly is a vital factor in bringing peace and order especially to far-flung areas. – Rappler.com