Duterte, MVP cross paths in Caloocan

Published March 5, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Argyll Geducos

President Duterte and Metro Pacific Investments Corp., head CEO Manny Pangilinan shook hands after the former delivered a speech in Caloocan, the first time the two were seen interacting in public after Duterte blasted two water concessionaires for their supposed onerous contracts with the government.

(Photo from Sen. Bong Go)
(Photo from Sen. Bong Go)

Duterte and Pangilinan, whose Metro Pacific Investments Corp. heads Maynilad Water Services, Inc., were both present at the inspection of the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) Harbor Link C3-R10 Section in Caloocan City, Thursday evening.

After delivering a short speech, the President went and shook the hand of the business tycoon but did not acknowledge him any further as he began to talk with Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea immediately afterward.

However, Duterte’s long-time aide Senator Bong Go said the President was not mad at Pangilinan and even told the business tycoon that they should meet soon.

Duterte has threatened to file economic sabotage cases against officials and owners of Maynilad and Manila Water Company, Inc. for their supposedly onerous deal which was discovered after the President order a review of their government contracts following the water supply crisis in Metro Manila last year.

According to the President, he found out that the two concessionaires’ agreements with the government contained onerous provisions that put the government and the public at a disadvantage.

Following Duterte’s tirades and threats, both Maynilad and Manila Water said they would no longer collect the compensation amounting to at least P10 billion that a Singapore-based arbitration court had ordered the Philippine government to pay them because of supposed denied rate increases to the water distributors.

President Duterte has told the two companies to accept the new water agreement the government penned unless they want to lose their businesses and face charges.

Malacañang earlier said Duterte will pursue the filing of charges of economic plunder, economic sabotage, and syndicated estafa if the two companies decided to reject the new deal. He, however, said that Pangilinan and the Ayalas of Manila Water would be given due process.