Hontiveros urges Duterte to fire Calida
Opposition Senator Risa Hontiveros on Monday challenged President Rodrigo Duterte to sack Solicitor General Jose Calida after it was revealed that his family bagged P150 million worth of government contracts.
Hontiveros stressed that firing public officials accused of corruption is not enough, the government must press charges against the solicitor general.
“I challenge President Duterte to prove his anti-corruption rhetoric. I challenge him to not only fire Mr. Calida but also to file the necessary charges against him,” Hontiveros said in a statement.
Calida’s family reportedly owned a security firm that bagged P150 million in contracts from government agencies.
But Malacañang on Monday came to Calida’s defense, saying that that there was no conflict of interest in the deals in question.
President Spokesperson Harry Roque said that the solicitor general’s enemies were only out to get back at him for successfully ousting former Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno through a quo warranto petition.
“We cannot tolerate public officials who coddle and give special treatments to drug lords and high-profile criminals, or in Mr. Calida’s case, a solicitor general who lawyers for plunderers like pork barrel mastermind Janet Lim-Napoles and the Marcoses, and a Solicitor General whose personal businesses profit from the government,” Hontiveros said.
The senator also called on President Duterte to stop recycling corrupt officials or the practice of reappointing dismissed government officials.
“Recycling corrupt public officials is recycling corruption. Corrupt public officers, who have been shielded from calls of transparency and accountability, are non-recyclable,” she said. /ee
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