There is buzz going around on the alleged compromise agreement entered into by Senator Ping Lacson and the Arroyo government in relation to the Dacer-Corbito case. Today's edition of the Philippine Daily Inquirer issued a denial from the good senator. Yet, the buzz still goes louder each and every minute.
The story goes that the senator reportedly agreed on withdrawing his bid for the presidency in exchange for supporting whoever will be the administration bet come 2010. People believe it since there's a precedent already---the reported P 200 million peso compromise agreement allegedly entered into by Senator Ping Lacson last 2004 elections. Lacson reportedly received this huge amount of money as a "campaign fund" to run against Fernando Poe Jr., the anointed opposition candidate.
And coffee shop habitues insist this is true and part of the recent agreement daw is the replacement of Raul Gonzales as Justice secretary.
First, Raul Gonzales, as some highly placed sources in Malacanang told Patricio Mangubat, has intimated his desire to leave the office of the Justice department since late last year. Gonzales' son suffers from a sensitive illness and needs immediate theraphy and medication. Furthermore, Gonzales is slated to run for the mayoral post in Iloilo (as reported earlier in this site). He needs to prepare for his bid.
Mrs. Arroyo decided to replace Gonzales with Agnes Devenadera to further strengthen the Dacer-Corbito case. If you will recall, Devenadera is no stranger to handling controversial cases involving the Lacson-Estrada group. Devenadera goes straight to the palace and with the domestic problem of Gonzales, he can't really devote 100% of his time in the case.
Second, Gonzales is needed to bolster the legal team of the palace should the opposition or the Senate question House Resolution 1109 before the Supreme Court. If you would recall, Gonzales was part of the original cha-cha team way back in 2006, under the team of former speaker Joe de Venecia (now with the Opposition). Mrs. Arroyo reportedly asked Gonzales to vacate the DOJ post in exchange for spearheading the support team of the palace and Speaker Nograles legal team.
The true reason why Ping Lacson withdrew his candidacy for the presidency is simple---he needs funds to defend himself against the Dacer-Corbito case. Legal eagles say, the case is tight. With the testimony of former friend Cezar Mancao and the additional testimony of Dumlao, Lacson faces a very tough case. This case will definitely drag on even beyond 2010.