Dapat si Robredo rin magaling! PACC urge NBI to investigate Robredo for ‘competing’ with gov’t on COVID-19 response

Photo courtesy of Rappler

The Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) Commissioner Manuelito Luna wants the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to investigate Vice President Leni Robredo for for allegedly "competing" with the national government's efforts in battling the coronavirus pandemic.

Luna announced on Thursday (April 2) that VP Robredo’s efforts may have violated the the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010 and the Solicitation Permit Law.

Robredo's office has been active in providing services for health workers and other frontliners,  such as the provision of free shuttle service, dormitories and personal protective gears.

Luna said in a statement.“The National Bureau of Investigation should investigate Vice-President Leni Robredo for illegal solicitations, actions that compete with, or calculated to undermine, national government efforts in this time of public health emergency or national calamity…,” 

The PACC executive said Robredo’s involvement in COVID-19 response undermines the national government efforts" to reduce the struggles during this health crisis situation.

“Being a part of the national government, Robredo is barred from competing with the DOH, DSWD and OCD/NDRRMC, or undermining their efforts, and from soliciting donations, in cash or in kind, from the taxpaying public, especially since funds have already been appropriated or set aside for relief assistance, disaster mitigation, rehabilitation, etc.,” Luna said.

Luna’s statement came a day after the hashtag, #OustDuterte trended on Twitter when President Rodrigo Duterte addressed the country Wednesday night (April 1) to warn dissenters that the government will go after them if they use the COVID-19 crisis to start chaos.

However, PACC fellow official Greco Belgica said in his Facebook post, It was just Luna's PERSONAL opinion and that DOES NOT reflect the sentiments of the Commission. He even expressed gratitude for the VP's efforts and others as well.

"PACC is not asking anyone to investigate VP Leni Robredo," Belgica said in his Facebook post.
"This is not the time for politicking. We are not concerned with any personality. Our main concern is to make sure all the needy Filipinos get all the help they need the President promised. Our concern is to end this COVID19 virus."

"Our concern is to save lives and rebuild our country and the lives of our people after all this ends." Belgica added.

Meanwhile, Robredo's office response, called the PACC statement "so ridiculous, so inappropriate, so out of touch".

“Since Day One of the COVID-19 crisis, Vice President Leni has done all she can to help health workers, government institutions, and ordinary Filipinos overcome the challenges they have had to face due to the restrictions on travel, the shortages in supplies, and she done all this without requesting additional public funds or seeking expanded powers,” said lawyer Barry Gutierrez, spokesperson for Robredo.

“She did this because she saw a need, and she took action to meet it. She did this because it was the right and responsible thing to do,” Gutierrez added.

Gutierrez also mentioned how frustrating the PACC as they would rather call for an investigation on the Vice President who is doing relief efforts when the world is facing the worst crisis.

“Health workers all over the country are running out of protective gear, and they need all the help they can get, regardless of where it comes from. I am certain that all these groups that have come together to help, the OVP included, would only be too thrilled if national government agencies came in with their larger budgets and bigger organizations to provide all the equipment and supplies that these institutions need,” Gutierrez said.

“In the meantime, rest assured, Vice President Leni will continue to do all she can to help,” Gutierrez added.

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