Rodrigo Duterte’s adviser Yang to be invited to House drug probe

Rodrigo Duterte’s adviser Yang to be invited to House drug probe

By: - Reporter / @FArgosinoINQ
/ 01:41 PM May 12, 2024

Evidence not enough to recommend charges vs Michael Yang, Christopher Lao – lawmaker

Michael Yang and Lloyd Christopher Lao (File photos)

MANILA, Philippines — Michael Yang, former President Rodrigo Duterte’s economic adviser, will be invited to the House of Representatives’ next hearing relating to the over P3 billion drug bust at a warehouse in Mexico, Pampanga last year.

According to Surigao del Norte Representative Robert Ace Barbers, Lincoln Ong, Yang’s interpreter who was also linked in the Pharmally scandal, “was found to be an incorporator of a company with links to other companies including Empire 999.”

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The lawmaker, who chairs the committee on dangerous drugs, revealed Empire 999 owned the warehouse where the P3 billion worth of shabu (crystal meth) was found.

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He explained that the company was allegedly operated by some Chinese, who also have bogus firms managed by personalities previously linked to anomalous activities during the past administration.

To further find the connection between Yang and Ong, Santa Rosa City Rep. Dan Fernandez, head of the public order committee, moved to invite the two to the next hearing.

“It will be remembered that Pharmally cornered billions in favored contracts with the PS DBM (Procurement Service of the Department of Budget and Management), then headed by Christopher Lao, to supply medical needs during the pandemic,” the statement issued by Barbers on Sunday reads.

“Without financial capacity, Lincoln Ong revealed that the acquisition of supplies abroad was financed by Michael Yang,” he said.

“In the latest turn of events, the Ombudsman has indicted another Pharmally executive and close friend of Michael Yang in the Pharmally case,” the lawmaker noted.

READ: Barbers: Some Chinese in PH submit fake papers to obtain gov’t docs

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Barbers likewise said most incorporators from different companies are Chinese allegedly presenting fake documents stating that they are supposedly Filipinos.

“This matter has now gone from a simple illegal drug smuggling to a national security concern. We need to establish the link between these companies and Michael Yang, the financier of Pharmally. It is not as simple as it seems,” said the House member.

“These personalities and their interests are so intertwined and intricately woven in an elaborate multi-layered company structure that resembles a maze deliberately designed to avoid detection and ultimate liability in case the scheme is discovered,” he pointed out.

“The activities of the other companies have not been unearthed yet but the incorporators have gone into hiding already and have started disposing their assets. There is more than meets the eye,” he stressed.

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“We intend to get to the bottom of this issue in order to find out if, indeed, the drug bust is just the tip of the iceberg,” he added.

TAGS: House, Pharmally

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