Gordon hails SC decision over Marcos crony fraud case

Published June 16, 2021, 9:58 AM

by Mario Casayuran

Senator Richard J. Gordon on Wednesday welcomed the Supreme Court’s ruling ordering Herminio T. Disini, former ally of the late President Ferdinand E. Marcos, to pay the Philippine government over P1 billion in damages for his role in awarding of the US$2.2 billion Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP) Project to Westinghouse Electrical Corporation.

“The Supreme Court’s decision on this case is very significant as it finally put a closure to an issue that has been unresolved for a long time. It is long overdue and finally, the Supreme Court has spoken. I commend the SC for its historic judgment,” Gordon said.

The SC Public Information Office said on Tuesday that the Court held Disini, who passed away in 2014, liable for exerting unwarranted influence in the awarding of the project by taking advantage of his close association with Marcos.

It stated in a written press briefer that “in 2012, the Anti-Graft Court found Disini liable for receiving commissions of about US$50 million from Westinghouse but absolved former President Marcos and Mrs. (Imelda) Marcos for lack of evidence.”

The Bataan power plant, which stands in Morong, is the first and only nuclear power plant in the Philippines.

However, it never opened due to various controversies including the issue on the fraudulent Westinghouse deal.

“The controversy that surrounded the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant had caused a huge waste of the public fund that could have been earmarked for other programs such as for livelihood, infrastructure, education and agriculture. And so, graft and corruption practices, especially in the government, should never be tolerated,” Gordon said.