PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday said he would not be signing bank waivers to dispute accusations of opposition Senator Antonio Trillanes IV, as he continued his tirades against him for having “stage 3 insanity.”
“If he want[s] to get evidence, do not get it from my mouth. You must be stupid, even if it is true or false. Why would I give you the pleasure?” Duterte told reporters in a chance interview.
Duterte insisted, however, that by not responding to Trillanes’ tirades, he was only invoking a “constitutional right” and should not be construed as admitting guilt.
“No one is allowed to make any adverse inference for some guy using his constitutional right. You cannot draw anything. You cannot infer, you cannot imagine anything bad, because it is sacred,” Duterte said.
“If Trillanes were bright, he should have been the country’s vice president already,” Duterte said.
Trillanes himself disputed Duterte’s assertion the 12 waivers of the bank secrecy which he signed to disprove his alleged offshore bank accounts were useless if the co-signer did not sign.
In a hastily called press conference, Trillanes presented to the media a copy of the revised Implementing Rules and Regulations of the Anti Money Laundering Act of 2001 to substantiate his stand.
Based on the provision on the Definition of Terms on related accounts, this would cover “All accounts or monetary instruments held, owned, or controlled by the owner or holder of the accounts, monetary instruments or properties subject of the freeze order of inquiry, whether such accounts are held, owned or controlled ‘SINGLY or JOINTLY’ with another person.”
From this provision, Trillanes said it could be deduced that the waivers which he signed could be used by AMLA to open all his accounts as alleged by the President.
Trillanes said the waivers, which bore only his signature, were complete.
As this developed, he raised anew his challenge to the President to do what he did—sign a waiver on his bank accounts which he exposed towards the end of the campaign.
If the President had nothing to hide, Trillanes asked why was he scared to issue a waiver on the bank secrecy law.
While the President had executed a special power of attorney to open his alleged bank accounts with the BPI where he stashed his unexplained wealth, as alleged by Trillanes, the senator said this was not made public.
“[Presidenfial counsel Salvador] Panelo merely flashed a copy of the SPA, which he said was signed by the President, but it was not made public so we never knew if it was true or not. We also did not know what happened,” Trillanes said.
He accused the President of grand deception—of merely deceiving the public by his lies. “These are big lies.”
He taunted the President for employing tactics to divert the issue on his son Davao Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte’s alleged involvement in the triad, an international syndicate engaged in the importation and distribution of illegal drugs and other criminal activities.
“While we were asking Paolo if he was willing to show his tattoo on the back of his body to prove that it wasn’t a dragon, it was the President who showed his rose tattoo. We’re not asking for the President’s tattoo,” stressed Trillanes.
A colored dragon with secret digits that will be decoded by the US Drug Enforcement Agency, Trillanes said, would prove membership in the triad.
But just like his father, Trillanes said Paolo was so afraid to face the serious accusations being hurled against them.
The President and Paolo had invoked their constitutional rights against self-incrimination when they refused to accede to the challege of Trillanes in the interest of transparency.
“They pretend not to be corrupt. So, they have to show the whole country,” Trillanes added.
Duterte has maintained his refusal to sign a bank secrecy waiver to match those signed by Trillanes to disprove allegations of hidden wealth.
“If Trillanes wants to find something of fault [sic] with me, tell him, ‘Go somewhere else and fly a kite,’” said Duterte.
Duterte even said he took Trillanes’ advice to visit a psychiatrist to heart, saying, however, that the former mutineer was already suffering from symptoms of “stage 3 insanity.”
Duterte said Trillanes had “perfected the art of crime,” since his supposed waiver on his Statement of Assets and Liabilities and Net Worth was “practically useless.”
“You know Trillanes, he really thinks people are ignorant. All his joint accounts are in partnership with Chinese. Nothing will happen even if he signs a waiver, if the co-signer does not agree to it,” he said.
“Even if he signs a waiver, if the co-signer does not, nothing would proceed. And the bank would never, never name who is the partner,” he added.
Over the weekend, Duterte vowed to expose Trillanes’ alleged offshore bank accounts in his apparent retaliation against the latter for smearing his reputation.
He also claimed the former mutineer had more than 200 consultants, all financed through the questionable Dibursement Acceleration Program, found illegal by the Supreme Court in 2014 for improper use of savings and inter-branch transfer of appropriations.