Robredo disagrees with Duterte’s statement on accepting gifts, cites anti-graft law

By Raymund Antonio

Vice President Leni Robredo said on Sunday the anti-graft law clearly prohibits all public officials and employees from accepting gifts, refuting the statement of President Rodrigo Duterte.

Vice President Leni Robredo (OVP / MANILA BULLETIN)
Vice President Leni Robredo (OVP / MANILA BULLETIN)

Robredo, who is the leader of the opposition, disagreed with Duterte on his controversial remark that police officers should accept gifts if these are given to them out of “generosity.”

She cited specifically Republic Act. No. 6713 or the “Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees.”

Section 7 of the RA 6713 states that “public officials and employees shall not solicit or accept, directly or indirectly, any gift, gratuity, favor, entertainment, loan or anything of monetary values from any person in the course of their official duties or in connection with any operation being regulated by, or any transaction which may be affected by the functions of their office.”

The lady official reminded the country’s policemen they are bound by this anti-graft law.

“Ang sabi ng batas talagang hindi pwedeng tumanggap whether directly or indirectly. Mayroon din tayong Anti-Graft and Corruption [Practices] Act, very specific doon bawal iyon,” she said on her weekly radio show, “BISErbisyong Leni.”

(The law states they can’t accept gifts whether directly or indirectly. We also have Anti-Graft and Corruption Practices Act, it is very specific there that is prohibited.)

In a speech during the 118th Police Service anniversary in Camp Crame last Friday, Duterte said police officers accepting gifts was not new to him.

“I know that, especially the police, if you are able to solve a crime and you guys from Davao alam man ninyo ‘yan (you know that),” the Chief Executive said.

“If you are able to solve a crime and the family would like to be generous to you or would nurture a feeling of gratitude for what you accomplish, then by all means, accept it,” he added.

But Robredo explained the act itself could be considered as a form of bribery.

“Ito ang pinagmumulan ng corruption ( This is where corruption comes from),” the Vice President said.

“Lalo na sa pulis kasi talagang ito ‘yung…Para nagiging bias dahil tumanggap ka (Especially to the police because this is really…when you became bias because you accepted it.)

READ MORE: ‘Accepting gifts not bribery,’ Duterte reminds cops to keep integrity intact