“Everything is your fault” (Part 3)

“I’d catch a grenade for you / Throw my hand on a blade for you / I’d jump in front of a train for you / You know I’d do anything for you / Oh, I would go through all this pain / Take a bullet straight through my brain / Yes, I would die for you, baby / But you won’t do the same”

It appears that Jessica ‘Gigi’ Reyes won’t sing this Bruno Mars’ “Grenade” hit song for her former boss, Senator Juan Ponce Enrile. 

Senator Juan Ponce Enrile and former chief of staff Gigi Reyes. Image source: ABS-CBN News website

In Part 1 of this series, we read that Atty. Enrique dela Cruz, Enrile’s lawyer, blamed her and only her for the diversion of the senator’s pork barrel to fake NGOs.

When we heard that, my Twitter friends and I wondered whether it was all scripted. If it was, it must have been a poorly-written script. (Or, as my friend Christine F. Herrera @cfherrera_mst quipped,  a “poorly-executed” one.)   

Screengrab of Twitter conversation with Nono last September 19, 2013.
Screengrab of Twitter conversation with @Pinoymommy and Jesse Dedel last September 18, 2013.
But, in a dramatic twist, she posted a statement on Facebook “which ABS-CBN News has confirmed to be authentic” and published “with permission,” Gigi Reyes decried that she’s being set up to take the fall for Enrile. 
A certain Atty. Enrique dela Cruz has been doing the media rounds saying that Senator Enrile did not give his blessings to any of the acts I performed on his behalf. He directly accused me of doing things without the Senator’s knowledge and going beyond the authority conferred upon me. Not content, Atty. dela Cruz goes on to say that the office of the Senator was investigating me for what he calls “katiwalian”, [corruption] and that I, NOT THE SENATOR, will be liable. 
I have lost contact with Senator Enrile and this very tragic development is beyond my comprehension. Does this Atty. dela Cruz REALLY know whereof he speaks? Really? (Read the full statement here. Emphasis hers.)
Reyes categorically stated that Enrile gave her the authority to do things on his behalf and that she only acted according to his behest.
The last time I spoke to the Senator from abroad, he maintained that he will stand by the authority he issued to me and that all that I did was faithful and pursuant to his instructions. He even told me to be strong; that we will fight together to prove the accusations against us are false and fabricated. … IF INDEED THESE STATEMENTS ARE SANCTIONED BY OR COMING FROM MY FORMER BOSS, THEN NOTHING CAN BE WORSE THAN THIS KIND OF TRAVESTY AND BETRAYAL. (Ibid. Emphasis hers.)
Thus, her statement supports what I wrote for the past two posts: That the hand would only do what the mind dictates. That Enrile cannot make her the fall guy (or, in this case, lady). 

Happier times. "Photo taken in October 2012 shows President Aquino with Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and his chief of staff Gigi Reyes during her 50th birthday celebration at the Makati Shangri-La Hotel." Caption and image source: The Philippine Star
It’s not just a simple case of command responsibility. Constitutionalist Joaquin G. Bernas, S.J. defined it this way
What is the doctrine of command responsibility? In its simplest terms, command responsibility means the responsibility of commanders for crimes committed by subordinate members of the armed forces or other persons subject to their control in international wars or domestic conflicts. (Source: The Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism)
There is command responsibility when the subordinate did something wrong and his superior officer did not do anything to prevent or punish him for the offense.
[T]he fact that a breach of the convention or of the Protocol was committed by a subordinate does not absolve his superiors from penal or disciplinary responsibility, as the case may be, if they knew, or had information which should have enabled them to conclude in the circumstances at the time, that he was committing or was going to commit such a breach and if they did not take all feasible measures within their power to prevent or repress the breach. (Ibid)
But, here in this case, it was no mere failure or negligence on the senator’s part to counter or correct the wrongdoing. Apparently, Enrile commanded Reyes to sign official PDAF documents for him. Therefore, the senator is responsible for her actions. Reyes may also be liable. But he caused her to do it. She did not act on her own.

My take? Enrile was the mind behind the hand that signed on the dotted line. 

Read Part 1 Part 2


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