Tuason: I personally delivered money to Jinggoy Estrada
Manila, Philippines –Ruby Tuason, testifying at the Senate on Thursday, claimed that she had personally delivered money to Senator Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada in his office in the chamber at least twice in 2008.
Tuason, a co-accused in the plunder case over the “pork barrel” scam, said she put the money, P1 million or P2 million, in a hand-carry or duffle bag.
Tuason said she could not remember, however, the exact dates that she went to the Senate to make the delivery.
“No, I’m sorry,” Tuason said, when asked by Senator Teofisto Guingona III, chairman of the blue ribbon committee, if she remembered the exact dates.
“During the afternoon, I never come I the morning,” she added.
Tuason said a male staff member of Estrada would pick her up from the car and carry the bag full of money for her.
“I don’t bring down the bag,…” she said.
Tuason also recalled that she would pass at the parking lot of the upper chamber so that she would not have to go through the security desk.
Tuason said she and the man would then go directly to Estrada’s office to hand him the money.
“He has a sala in his office. It’s just put on the floor next to his desk,” Tuason said.
She said she and Estrada were the only ones present whenever she gave him the money.
The money was supposed to be Estrada’s share for funnelling his Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) or “pork barrel” funds to Napoles’ alleged fake organizations.
Tuason also recalled that Estrada called her one time while she was with Napoles and her husband to ask for money.
She said the senator told her that he needed money so she delivered P1 million to Estrada, who was then at a comedy bar.
Tuason, former social secretary of then president and now Mayor Joseph Estrada, was said to be the conduit of Senator Juan Ponce Enrile and Estrada.
She said she was the one who introduced Napoles, the alleged mastermind in the scam, to the lawmakers.
Tuason fled to the United States after the scandal broke out before returning to become state witness. She said she was bothered by her conscience.
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