Cayetano: Phisgoc open to probe, but not to witch hunt
MANILA, Philippines — Former Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano said Wednesday that the Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee (Phisgoc) is open to any investigation—but not to witch hunt—amid alleged irregularities that marred the country’s hosting of the sporting event last year.
During the turnover ceremony of the30th Southeast Asian Games Final Report Book, Cayetano said that an investigation and a witch hunt are two different things.
“So, is Phisgoc open to any investigation? Yes. E bakit may mga masasakit na salita versus that [So, why are there harsh words versus that]? Because we’re open to investigation but we’re against witch hunts,” Cayetano said.
“’Yung investigation, ibig sabihin may maipapakita kayong allegation, meron kayong binibintang, may proseso para makadepensa para yung namimintang ay mape-present nila ang ebidensiya nila at yung bintang nila, yung accusation. And yun namang kabila ay makakasagot,” he added.
(The investigation, meaning you must present allegation, you have accusations, there is a process so there could be a defense, so that the party being accused of something can also present their evidence and their accusation, that is the accusation. And the other party can answer.)
Cayetano made the remark just a day after Senator Risa Hontiveros called for a “full-blown” investigation of the allegedly irregular deals in connection with the country’s hosting of the SEA Games, particularly the P9.5 billion used to construct the main sports venue inside New Clark City (NCC) in Tarlac province.
The former Speaker likewise, hit some members of the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) over its request for a financial audit of the SEA Games, saying that the event was being used for politics.
“So going here, sinabi sa akin nag-file daw ng case ang POC na mag-submit daw kami ng financial report. Sinulatan namin sila. By the way, it’s the majority members and part of the election problems of the POC, again ginagamit sa pulitika pati SEA Games,” Cayetano said.
(So, going here, I was told the POC filed a case and that we should submit a financial report. We wrote them a letter. By the way, it’s the majority members and part of the election problems of the POC, again SEA Games is also being used for political agenda.)
“So to those members who sued us in court, mapapahiya kayo. Bakit? Sabi niyo pahingi ng financial audit. E ongoing yung audit. Kahit kausapin niyo yung auditors, it will take them a week or two na matapos,” he added.
(So, to those members who sued us in court, you will be disappointed. Why? You said you want a financial audit. Now, the audit is ongoing. Even if you talk to the auditors, it will take them a week or two to finish.)
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.