MANILA, Jan. 26, 2014— A Caritas Philippines official has challenged former Sen. Panfilo Lacson to name politicians who pocketed kickbacks from substandard bunkhouses in typhoon-ravaged areas.
Father Edu Gariguez suggested it was time for the current presidential assistant for rehabilitation and recovery to provide names so the accused could air their sides.
“It is not fair to be accusing politicians of being ‘obstructionists’. We need to know who they are and be allowed to tell their stories,” Gariguez said.
“In doing so, we can help improve the system of helping the victims of (super typhoon) Yolanda,” he said.
Caritas Philippines is the social action arm of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines.
Lacson earlier revealed that 10 politicians allegedly collected kickbacks from contractors that did not follow the government’s specifications for the construction of temporary shelters for typhoon survivors in Eastern Visayas.
The official stopped short of identifying the politicians but claimed that they are composed of allies of the Aquino administration as well as of the opposition.
Lacson also said that criminal charges await the politicians once the authorities finish their investigation and gathering evidence.
Gariguez also said that revealing the names and being able to hear their side will help clarify what type of “obstructions” they are to rehabilitation efforts. (CBCPNews)