MANILA, Philippines - Sen Jinggoy Estrada admitted to building a multi-million-peso house in high-end subdivision Wack-Wack Village on Thursday, September 26.
The house was first reported by Rappler on Wednesday.
In a phone patch with reporters, Estrada confirmed he is building the Wack-Wack house which he said he started constructing "last year" or in 2012.
"I sold my property or my house and lot in Greenhills, and that's what I used to pay for the [new] house," he said.
The Wack-Wack house, however, does not appear in Estrada's 2012 Statement of Assets, Liabilites and Net Worth (SALN), the year he said he started construction.
His 2012 SALN lists 3 condo units in San Juan City, a condo unit in Tagaytay City, a farm in Lipa City, plus a condo unit, two other lots, a townhouse and one house "under construction" all in Quezon City.
Wack-Wack Village, however, is located in Mandaluyong City.
Estrada also failed to mention when exactly he sold his house and lot in Greenhills, although the last time a house and lot in Greenhills appeared in his SALN was in 2010. In that SALN, he said he acquired the property through an "exchange."
The Greenhills property disappeared in his 2011 SALN.
While the Greenhills property was no longer in his SALN by 2011 onwards, neither his 2011 or 2012 SALNs reflected acquisition of the new Wack-Wack property.
Fair market value
The listed current fair market value of Estrada's Greenhills property that he said he sold to pay for his Wack-Wack house was P10.9 million. The lot was listed as costing P6.1 million, while the house was valued at P4.8 million, according to his 2010 SALN.
The 3,084-square-meter Wack-Wack house he is building is reported to be worth about P120 million.
His reported net worth in 2012, the year he said he started building the house, was P193,580,509.92.
Jinggoy hung up
When asked why his 2012 SALN does not include the Wack-Wack house, he replied, "Ano? Hello? (What? Hello?)" and the line was disconnected. Text messages to Estrada after the call went unanswered.
An earlier call to Estrada on Wednesday, September 18, inquiring about his Wack-Wack property also ended the same way — he hung up.
The lot alone along Wack-Wack Road where Estrada is building his home is estimated to cost between P210 million to P240 million, as the land in the exclusive subdivision is said to be priced anywhere from P70,000-P80,000 per square meter, a check with the Wack-Wack barangay office showed.
Estrada is accused of diverting his Priority Development Assistance Funds (PDAF) or pork barrel funds to bogus non-governmental organizations allegedly set up by former military supplier Janet Lim Napoles in exchange for hefty kickbacks.
On Monday, September 16, Estrada was one of 3 senators charged with plunder by the Department of Justice (DOJ) before the Office of the Ombudsman.
Estrada has denied any participation in any irregularity and has also refrained from participating in the ongoing Senate Blue Ribbon inquiry on the scam. He has said he is willing to face any plunder charges against him.