Vico not being singled out – DOJ, NBI chiefs
MANILA, Philippines – Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto is not being singled out on the investigation being conducted by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) against local government officials who violated Republic Act 11469 or the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act, both Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra and NBI Director Eric Distor said.
“Pursuant to the President’s instruction, the DOJ (Department of Justice) has directed the NBI and its regional offices, as well as all field offices of the National Prosecution Service to monitor the actions of all LGU (local government units) officials and investigate any violation or contravention of guidelines set by the IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases), such as on the unhampered flow of essential goods and movement of persons exempted from the lockdown,” Guevarra explained.
“The President reiterated the same order during his address to the nation last Monday night,” he added.
Aside from Sotto, the NBI also invited Barangay Captain Emeliano Ramos of Barangay Talun Uno in Las Piñas and Barangay Captain Rodolfo Palma of Barangay Pag Asa in Quezon City.
NBI Director Eric Distor also said that the NBI would not only focus on local government officials but will moreover pursue an investigation against quarantine violators.
Last Monday (March 30), President Duterte warned local officials that the NBI would pursue them for violating quarantine rules that the government has set.
The invited local officials allegedly violated the Bayanihan Law.
After the government suspended public transport as part of the Enhanced Community Quarantine, Sotto allowed tricycles to assist medical frontliners.
The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) has objected to the use of tricycles. Initially, Sotto appealed to the national government but eventually suspended tricycle operations and vowed to follow the rules imposed by the government.
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