PRRD won’t attend Senate probe on bank accounts

MANILA — President Rodrigo Duterte said he had no plan to attend a Senate inquiry into the alleged bank accounts of the Duterte family.

“Two senators said if that Duterte comes here, we will lead a protest. I said, you know guys, you are too presumptuous. Whoever told you that I will go there in your place? What I can get there? What I can see?” Duterte said in his speech during the 45th anniversary of the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) Tuesday night.

Senator Antonio Trillanes IV, a staunch critic of Duterte, filed last Monday a Senate resolution calling for Senate probe into undeclared PHP100 million banks deposits of the President and his daughter Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio.

Senator Francis ‘Chiz’ Escudero, chairman of the Senate committee on banks, financial institutions and currencies, said he had no plan to invite Duterte but if the President would like to testify, the senator won’t stop him.

According to Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, President Duterte has really no reason to attend the Senate inquiry since Trillanes has no authenticated documents and just relying on ‘old issues’ which the senator used against Duterte during the 2016 elections campaign.

“The documents have no authentication. So why we should waste time?” Roque said in a Palace briefing on Tuesday.

Roque said the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) had already made comments that Trillanes’ documents did not come from them.

“We will let the Senate decide because they are (a) co-equal branch of government. If there is no authentication how you will investigate. We have secrecy of bank deposits laws,” he said.

Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III has said he would not stop any probe but described the inquiry as “tragic waste of time.”