Tourism chief, Tulfo brothers in hot water
No one is untouchable in the administration of President Rodrigo R. Duterte, and everyone will have to answer.
This was the assurance of Special Assistant to the President (SAP) Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go over the controversy involving Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Wanda Teo.
Reports said the Commission on Audit has questioned PTNI’s disbursement record showing three checks issued to Ben Tulfo’s media outfit, Bitag Media Unlimited, Inc. for PHP60.01-million worth of DOT commercials in 2017.
In Davao City, Go said all documents pertaining to the People’s Television Network, Inc. (PTNI) disbursement record on DOT advertisements are already on the table of Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea for examination.
“Si Pangulong Duterte naman fair. Alamin totoong nangyari, yung buong storya. Nag-usap na sila ni ES (Executive Secretary) Medialdea na tingnan lahat involved. Kung ano totoo, ilalabas (The President is fair. Find out the whole story. He already spoke to ES Medialdea to look into it and whatever is the truth, it will come out),” Go said in an interview on Thursday.
“Basta si Pangulong Dutetre, walang untouchable. Sa kanya lahat managot (For President Duterte, no one is untouchable. Everyone will have to answer to him),” he said.
On the other hand, Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Martin Andanar begged off from commenting on the issue because it is already being reviewed.
“Pinag-aaralan yan ngayon ng Presidente. Habang pinag-aaralan, di muna ako mag-comment (It is being reviewed by the President. While it is being reviewed I will not comment),” Andanar told reporters in an interview on the sidelines of the Hard Hat Ceremony for the PHP700 million Mindanao Media Hub in Davao City.
Earlier, Teo denied she had a hand in awarding the advertisement to her brother, saying the deal was a government-to-government contract that went through bidding.
She said the checks were issued to PTV4 when the deliverables were met.
Teo also brushed aside accusations of conflict of interest on her part, saying the ad placements were under the discretion of PTNI. (PNA)