Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Lawyer: Arrest of Arroyo firm bookkeeper ‘unfair’

The lawyer of Rowena Del Rosario, a former bookkeeper for the Arroyo-owned company LTA Inc., on Monday said it was “unfair" that the Senate had his client arrested just because they could not get the answers they wanted from her.

Earlier in the day, the Senate blue ribbon committee cited Del Rosario in contempt and ordered her arrest for supposedly being evasive in her answers and allegedly covering up for former First Gentleman Jose Miguel “Mike" Arroyo and Negros Occidental Rep. Ignacio “Iggy" Arroyo.

But Del Rosario’s lawyer, Nunilo Marapao, said his client answered all questions honestly during Monday's Senate blue ribbon committee hearing on the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) choppers mess.

“It is unfair because she never evaded any questions. She tried as much as possible to answer the questions of the senators to the best of her knowledge. She cannot invent answers just to please them," he said in a statement released on Monday evening.

“Ms. Del Rosario was just being honest to herself, and she tried her best to cooperate with the Senate. She answered all questions based on what she knew to be the truth," he added.

“Ms. Del Rosario was in fact, very consistent with her answers. She did not offer any false testimony. For instance, how can she testify that the transactions pertaining to the helicopters were in the books of the LTA, when she knows that they are not? Alangan namang sabihin niya andun?" he said.

“The order of arrest speaks for itself and shows how unfair it is to my client. The senators just want to hear what they want to hear. She cannot testify to something that she has no knowledge of," he added.

Earlier in the day, the former LTA bookkeeper said that the choppers sold to the PNP in 2009 were not owned by Mike Arroyo and were leased by LTA Inc. as stated by Iggy Arroyo.

But the senators insisted Del Rosario was being “evasive" when asked to explain why she had remitted $500,000 to Robinson Helicopters for the “advanced rental" of the five choppers and had paid P18 million in maintenance fees to Lionair from 2003 to 2011 when the choppers were just supposedly leased to LTA. — MRT/VS, GMA News

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