It appears to Vice President Leni Robredo that President Duterte is “coddling” government officials who are involved in allegations of corruption.
Speaking on her Sunday radio show, Robredo lamented that instead of investigating these officials on his own, the Chief Executive is on an attack mode on senators who are looking into these corruption allegations.
“Pero ang nangyayari ngayon halatang-halata na siya pa tuloy ‘yung nagka-coddle (But what’s happening now is it’s very obvious that he’s the one coddling). So, ano ‘yung (what’s the) impression na binibigay (that you’re giving)?” she said.
“Kaya, sa akin, ewan ko na lang kung meron pa ding mga hindi naiintindihan ito. ‘Yung lahat ng ebidensya nasa harap mo na (So, for me, I don’t know if there people who do not understand this. All the evidence is before you already),” Robredo added.
If the President is really not involved in the allegations, then he should not wait for the Senate to investigate but he should be the one to lead the way, the vice president stressed.
She noted that Duterte’s reaction towards the senators and the Philippine Red Cross is (PRC) similar to what he has been doing to her since 2016.
READ: Duterte's ultimatum to Gordon: 'Submit Red Cross to auditing, or we quarrel'
“Ganyan naman siya bawat pag-criticize natin sa pamahalaan kung anu ano sinasabi sa atin na hindi naman totoo (He’s like that ever since when we criticize the government, he says nonsense things about us that are not true),” Robredo said.
The opposition leader expects the President to do to others as he done to her whenever she comments on government policies and programs.
Based on her personal experience, Robredo said that the Chief Executive has no qualms about lying just to get back at her.
However, she is saddened that this is happening during the pandemic.
“Lumalabas na grabe iyong korapsyon (It came out that corruption has been too much) at a time na nagkakamatayan iyong mga tao. Bakit ganito ang daming nagugutom, ang daming nawalan ng trabaho, tapos pagkakakitaan nyo (the people are dying. Why are you going to profit when there are so many going hungry, losing jobs)?” she asked.
READ: Duterte sending ‘mixed signals’ on anti-corruption drive, says Robredo
For weeks, Duterte has been lashing out against Senator Richard Gordon, chairman of the Senate blue ribbon committee hearing currently investigating the billions-worth of anomalous government contracts signed between the Department of Health (DOH) and the Department of Budget and Management-Procurement Service (DBM-PS) and Pharmally Pharmaceuticals.
Pharmally Pharmaceuticals was a newly registered company when it entered into an almost P10-billion contract with the government to supply personal protective equipment (PPE) last year, and was shown to have low capitalization, aside from being apparently headed by wanted criminals in Taiwan.
Pharmally has links to Duterte’s ex-economic advisor, Michael Yang, and fraternity brother Christopher Lloyd Lao, who was also the former head of the DBM-PS and reportedly an ex-aide of Senator Christopher “Bong” Go.