Despite conviction, Erap says he was ‘never tempted’ to steal govt money

Almost three years after the Sandiganbayan found him guilty of plunder, former President Joseph Estrada on Monday denied committing any anomaly while he was in power and maintained that he never gave in to temptations to steal from the government’s coffers.

Estrada, who is seeking to reclaim the presidency in the upcoming May 10 polls, also said his family and close friends never received any special favors from him.

Kailanman ay hindi po. Transparent po ang aking gobyerno. Ni isang kamag-anak, walang na-appoint. Walang naki-alam, walang nakinabang kahit na kumpare o kamag-anak. Walang nakaka-impluwensiya sa akin,” Estrada said during GMA News and Public Affairs’ Hiritan 2010.

(I never gave in to any temptation. My government is transparent. I have not appointed a single relative. My friends and relatives did not benefit anything. Nobody influenced me.)

Those who fielded questions were GMANews.TV editor-in-chief Howie Severino, University of the Philipines Economics professor Solita “Mareng Winnie” Monsod, UP students, GMA’s Unang Hirit host Arnold Clavio and the program’s viewers.

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