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COA chief: 4 senators gave over P1-B 'pork' to Napoles NGOs

(Updated 5 p.m.) Four senators had channeled over P1 billion of their pork barrel funds to seven non-government organizations linked with businesswoman Janet Lim-Napoles from 2007 to 2009, Commission on Audit chairperson Grace Pulido Tan said in a Senate probe Thursday.

According to the COA chief, these lawmakers were Senators Bong Revilla Jr. (P483.49 million), Juan Ponce Enrile (P332.7 million), Jinggoy Estrada (P262.575 million) and Gringo Honasan (P14.55 million).

Tan also said Revilla, Enrile and Honasan confirmed their signatures on documents that disbursed these funds, but Estrada did not give a response.

All four senators earlier denied close ties with Napoles, who surrendered to President Benigno Aquino Wendesday night after weeks of hiding from the law..

Napoles is facing charges of serious illegal detention for the alleged kidnapping of pork-barrel scam whistleblower Benhur Luy.

Tan said NGOs supposedly linked with Napoles are:

-Agri and Economic Program for Farmers Foundation, Inc (AEPFFI),
-Agriculture Para sa Magbubukid Foundation, Inc. (APMFI),
-Countrywide Agri and Rural Economic Development (CARED) Foundation Inc.
-Masaganang Ani Para sa Magsasaka Foundation, Inc. (MAMFI),
-People's Organization for Progress and Development Foundation Inc (POPDFI),
-Philippine Social Development Foundation Inc. (PSDFI), and
-Social Development Program for Farmers Foundation, Inc. (SDPFFI).

Senator Teofisto Guingona, who chairs the blue ribbon committee doing the probe, said there seems to be a pattern that these NGOs had ghost projects and locations, or that the intended beneficiaries did not receive the items that were supposedly purchased through government funds.

2 more senators

During the same hearing, Tan likewise said that two more senators will soon be implicated in the alleged pork barrel scam.

The COA chief said her agency will release next week a report on the Philippine Forest Corp., which will supposedly contain the name of two senators involved in the alleged anomaly.

Senator Franklin Drilon asked Tan to name these two senators, but the COA official said she can't do so pending the release of the audit report.

Tan however said that these two lawmakers to be implicated were "not in the hall" when she made the allegation.

Aside from Drilon and Guingona, the senators who were seen inside the Senate plenary hall at that time were Senators Francis Escudero, Alan Peter Cayetano, Pia Cayetano, Ralph Recto, Bam Aquino, Juan Edgardo Angara, Joseph Victor Ejercito, Aquilino Pimentel III, Grace Poe and Antonio Trillanes IV. —  LBG/KBK, GMA News