DoT P60-M ad placement ‘highly irregular’ — Sen. Pangilinan
by Marje Pelayo | Posted on Wednesday, May 2nd, 2018
Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan
MANILA, Philippines — Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan has urged the Office of the Ombudsman to look into the controversial P60-million ad placement of the Department of Tourism (DOT.)
“Yes, the P60 million DOT ad buy is on its face highly irregular and the Ombudsman should look into it,” Pangilinan said in a statement Tuesday, May 1.
The Commission on Audit (COA) on its website, published on Friday, April 27, an audit report on the government-run People’s Television Network Inc. (PTNI) where the COA said “there was no memorandum of agreement (MOA) or contract between PTNI and Ben Tulfo’s Bitag Media Unlimited Incorporated (BMUI) to air DoT’s commercial ad in Tulfo’s show.
Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo in defense of the transaction said it was aboveboard and that “the contract between the two entities went through the proper bidding process.”
“The explanation that the DoT dealt with PTV-4 is unacceptable,” Pangilinan concluded. – UNTV News & Rescue
The Department of Justice is waiting for an official directive from Malacañang concerning the controversial P60-million deal between the Department of Tourism (DOT) and government-run TV station, PTV 4 in 2017.
In a text message, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra confirmed that the Office of the Ombudsman is already investigating the matter. He added that the DOJ is “ready to help” in the probe.
“I’m verifying directly with Sec. Panelo, just waiting for his reply,” Guevarra’s message reads.
It will be recalled that Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo announced yesterday that the DOJ will take steps to recover the P60-million in ad placement fees that the DOT paid to broadcaster Ben Tulfo’s Bitag Media two years ago. Bitag is a blocktimer at PTV-4 and is owned by Ben Tulfo.
The deal was awarded to Bitag’s show, Kilos Pronto, which is hosted by the Tulfo brothers.
Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat wants to return the P60-M to the Commission on Audit.
This controversy resulted in the resignation of then DOT Secretary Wanda Teo who is the sister of the Tulfo brothers.
MANILA, Philippines – The Office of the President is now looking into the controversial P60-million advertisement contract placed in the program managed by the brothers of Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo in the state run-People’s Television (PTV 4).
However, the presidential spokesperson refused to divulge who particularly in the president’s office investigates the issue.
But Malacañang assured the probe includes all those involved and the president will take appropriate actions once the investigation is complete
“Many reports have reached the OP, and the president have taken action on these. Don’t be on a rush, let the investigations proceed to determine if reports are correct or not, the president has already a track record on this,” Presidential Spokesperson Roque said.
Previous reports said that aside from Tourism Secretary Teo, the probe also covers Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar.
Andanar oversees PTV 4 as Palace communications chief.
“Of course it would be an investigation that would cover everyone. I leave the statement of SAP Bong Go for whatever it is worth, he was the one quoted as having said Secretary Andanar is part of that so I let it be,” Roque added.
Andanar, meanwhile, refused to give comments on this issue while investigations are ongoing.
For now, Malacañang said President Duterte has no directives for Cabinet members involved in the controversy to resign, particularly Secretary Teo.
“Every Cabinet member, unless they’re fired, enjoys the trust and confidence of the president,” the presidential spokesman said. – Rosalie Coz | UNTV News & Rescue
BORACAY ISLAND, one of the most visited destinations in the Philippines
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), and Department of Tourism (DOT) have already submitted to Malacañang the detailed proposal in the closure of Boracay Island starting on April 26.
The said recommendation of the inter-agency task force aims to give way to the extensive clean-up drive on the island.
Through a text message, Senior Deputy Executive Secretary Menardo Guevarra stated that the final action on Boracay would be likely discussed at Wednesday’s Cabinet meeting.
As for the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA), the agency believes it would best if its closure would just take place during lean months or low season.
In this way, the establishments or workers on the island would not be severely affected.
“Una, nirekomenda namin na simulan ito sa lean months. Ibig sabihin, magkakaroon talaga ng pagbaba sa empleyo—ang mga seasonal employment sa lugar. Ikalawa, nirerekomenda namin na ang bilang nga mga manggagawang ito sila ang maaaring isama sa paglilinis,” said NEDA Usec. Rosemarie Edillon.
(Firstly, we are recommending to start this in the lean season. That means there will be a drop in the employment—the seasonal employment in the area. Number two, we are also recommending that these workers be involved in the clean-up drive.)
Meanwhile, the Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC) and Office of the Civil Defense (OCD) Region 6 has begun creating a contingency plan for the forthcoming shut down of the island.
Dir. Jose Roberto Nuñez said they are already preparing for the mitigation plans to whatever would be the outcome of the interagency’s recommendation on the Boracay closure.
“If the president will say, ‘I will totally close that,’ if ever, then meron na tayong preparation (we would already have some preparation),” said the director.
“We could mitigate ang effect niya sa (its effect on) livelihood sa (on the) business sector,” said RPOC chair Gov. Samuel Gumar
If the island would be totally shut down, 79,182 individuals and over 36,000 jobs might get affected.
This is apart from the million peso revenues in the island that has been gone. — Robbie De Guzman | UNTV News & Rescue
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