(The Commission on Audit auditor who testified
in the plunder case against former military comptroller Major General Carlos Garcia has broken her silence regarding
her testimony in the Sandiganbayan...
for an exclusive interview. )
...Asked if she believed the prosecution had the evidence
to convict Garcia, Mendoza said: “Well, I have to qualify this. I’m not a lawyer, I’m a public accountant
by profession, but I have a solid 20 years of service from the Commission on Audit. In my experience, I have always been successful
in all the cases that I filed in the Sandiganbayan, one of which has already been affirmed in the Supreme Court. I also did
a lot of trainings in financial and fraud investigation in the Office of the Ombudsman, including the Office of the Special
Prosecutor. So, I think when I say I have gathered the evidence, I am confident that, yes, we have the evidence. But with
the appreciation of the evidence, of course, I have to leave it to the respective courts.”...
Mendoza said it's difficult for her to hear prosecutors
now say they do not have enough evidence to convict Garcia. She insisted that the evidence is already with
"We used lots and lots of time, private time, thinking
of ways and means of how to get a certain file and how to gather the evidence, and so it is painful for me if people will
be saying that we don’t have the evidence. If I may qualify: from the point of view of an auditor I believe we have
the evidence," she said...
Mendoza also decried how the public, and even the media,
lost interest in the Garcia case.
"This is something that I would try to tell the public.
During those times, not one of the media was there, not one of the so-called concerned citizens can be found, not one anti-corruption
civil society was there to monitor the case. It was the defendant, the prosecution, the lawyers of the government, my husband
and me. So, no media, no civil society."
In the latter part of the trial, she said she
got support from the clergy...Mendoza said she testified against Garcia "because I am a state auditor,
and it is my duty to tell to the public what we have reviewed what we have discovered. It is my responsibility for every Filipino
and it is my responsibility to my country."...
Mendoza said she is breaking her silence to disabuse
the perception of the public that government is riddled with corrupt workers...
"I risked my life, my entire family and my career simply
because, I would like to tell my fellow Filipino and to all others here and abroad, hindi lahat ng tao sa gobyerno magnanakaw,
hindi lahat ng Pilipino ay natatakot manindigan laban sa korupsyon," she added.