Janet Lim-Napoles, the alleged Philippine pork-barrel scam mastermind, should have to pay for her stay in jail, said a senator this week.
Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago asked President Benigno Aquino III to get her to pay for her time in prison, Rappler reported. Santiago said that Napoles should have to make a choice between staying in an ordinary jail facility or stay in a “pay-for-stay” facility that’s “enhanced.”
The Philippine National Police is spending about P150,000 per month for Napoles’ stay in a facility in Sta Rosa, Laguna, according to the news website.
“This personality apparently enjoys a rock-star status because of allegations that she committed the crime of plunder in the P10-billion pork barrel scam,” Santiago was quoted as saying. “If Napoles as a person in interest refuses to cooperate by providing information which she apparently possesses about the scam, there is no acceptable reason why government should single her out for special treatment among the more than 70,000 detention prisoners in the country,” she added.
Napoles has remained silent about legislators who have allegedly partook in a scam that converted pork-barrel funds into millions of pesos, reports indicated.
“Since Napoles refuses to cooperate, it appears that there is no substantial reason for the government to pay so much money just for one individual when it does not provide the same services for all other prisoners facing criminal charges and denied the right to bail,” Santiago said, according to The Inquirer.
But at least three senators–including Santiago–have called for an end to the probe into Napoles’ alleged scam.
“The logical step is to proceed to the other NGOs (non-government organizations) not related to (suspected pork barrel scam operator Janet Lim) Napoles. We have already obtained enough information to tell us how the scam was done,” Santiago was quoted by Philstar.com as saying.