PDAF lawyer Baligod thinking of Senate run?

Jed Asaph Cortes

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PDAF lawyer Baligod thinking of Senate run?
'I did my best as an ordinary citizen, but I realized that there is a limit to what you can do if you are not inside government'

He’s running? Pork scam lawyer Levito Baligod is said to be considering a Senate bid so he could pursue his advocacies, including fighting corruption in government.

“I’ve been thinking very seriously during the past days lang, because some groups have approached me pushing na tumakbo ako (me to run),” he said.

“A friend told me: If you want to win in a boxing match, you must be inside the ring. Do not expect to win the boxing match if you’re outside the ring. And I got the drift of what he meant.”

“And really, if you’re not in government, it’s very difficult to push your advocacies. Mine is fighting corruption,” he said in a mix of English and Filipino.

“I’ve tried the NBI, DOJ, COA, [National Bureau of Investigation, Department of Justice, Commission on Audit] and even the Ombudsman. I did my best as an ordinary citizen, but I realized that there is a limit to what you can do if you are not inside government. I cannot demand agencies to provide me with documents because I do not have any authority, I don’t have subpoena powers.”

‘Prosecute all’

The pork scam lawyer, who acted as counsel for whistleblowers Benhur Luy and Merlina Suñas, thinks many of the legislators linked to the scam were spared for a reason. Luy cut ties with him in 2014 after he was observed to have had less time for the whistleblower.

“Look at what happened sa Department of Justice, we submitted documents to support the investigation of 14 senators and about 120 congressmen. But only 3 senators and 25 congressmen (were prosecuted),” he said. (LISTEN: PODCAST: Gov’t slow to act on Napoles scam – Baligod)

Senators Jinggoy Estrada and Bong Revilla are currently detained for allegedly embezzling millions of pork barrel funds, while Enrile’s petition for bail was granted by the Supreme Court.

“I am convinced that the DOJ did that because De Lima is running, and she needs the support of all of these politicians.”

“My stance is ‘prosecute all’,” he added. “I am into serious thinking now, on how to pursue the advocacy. This is not only my advocacy. This is what most of the Filipinos want to happen. That we will make all officials responsible to account for their deeds.”

He will “very likely” choose to run as independent. On who to support as president, he says he will announce once his decision to run is final.

“The bottomline for me in choosing a presidential candidate is that the candidate should provide the highest possibility that he will be an anti-corruption president.”

Baligod’s wife Marilou Galenzoga-Baligod is also said to be contemplating running again for mayor of Baybay City, Leyte. She will be up against a well-entrenched political family affiliated with the Liberal Party.

Let’s see how things turn out. – Rappler.com

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