Former president Aquino’s spokesperson, lawyer Abigail Valte made the reaction in connection with the lookout bulletin order (LBO) issued by the Department of Justice against him and several others in connection with the Dengvaxia controversy before the agency.
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Valte on DOJ’s LBO: Aquino adheres to the law
Aurea Calica (The Philippine Star) - July 22, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Former president Benigno Aquino III adheres to the law and has been facing squarely the charges filed against him before various forums.

Aquino’s spokesperson, lawyer Abigail Valte made the reaction in connection with the lookout bulletin order (LBO) issued by the Department of Justice against him and several others in connection with the Dengvaxia controversy before the agency.

The LBO, issued in December during the time of resigned justice secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II, will stay according to new DOJ chief Menardo Guevarra because the charges against Aquino and the others are not yet resolved.

But Valte said the “lookout bulletin doesn’t serve much of a purpose at this point since a hold departure order was already issued by the Sandiganbayan” in connection with the graft and usurpation of authority charges he is facing over the Mamasapano incident in 2015.

“Should there be a need for the former president to travel, he will secure permission from the Sandiganbayan to do so. In the meantime, he continues to defend himself in various fora where these complaints have been filed,” Valte said over the weekend.

Aquino has been appearing at the DOJ to face the complaints against him but he bewailed the National Bureau of Investigation’s filing of charges against him related to the Dengvaxia controversy.

The NBI is an attached agency of the DOJ but Guevarra reasoned it can file a case before the Office of the Ombudsman after a fact-finding investigation.

But Aquino said he was not accorded due process because he only received a subpoena asking him to appear before the bureau on May 25. Aquino said he sent his lawyers, but they were not even given specifics of any complaint.

“Is that the due process they are referring to? Is a subpoena enough even if I was not given the opportunity to reply? Is that it?” Aquino asked.

Guevarra said Aquino’s right to due process was not violated because he will have the chance to explain before the ombudsman.

On Wednesday, Aquino also questioned the expertise of the NBI to decide on the matter without hearing the side of those concerned.

The former president said the NBI arrived at conclusions without asking questions – like grading someone in school even without a test given.

Since the subpoena was clearly a template and stated nothing but for him to appear before the NBI and “then and there to give your evidence” in a certain investigation, Aquino also said he did not know what to bring to defend himself.

“’Yun nga ang masakit eh. Ano nga dadalhin ko?” Aquino said, adding he was wondering whether to bring past communications from the Department of Budget and Management and a copy of the General Provisions Act where the budget on the vaccination program was included, and documents from the Department of Health explaining the Dengvaxia.

BENIGNO AQUINO III DENGVAXIA
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