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Timesman | Of SEA Games and Leni

President Duterte assured the people he will order an investigation into alleged irregularities in the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games preparations after the sporting event is over.

In an interview with GMA 7’s “Unang Hirit” Monday morning, the President admitted ‘negligence’ on the part of the organizers.

“I’m not attributing it to anybody. But you know it’s a huge fund (referring to billions of pesos allotted for the SEA Games) and there ought not to have problems like even logistics and things,” he said.

No doubt that the President will make good his words, but I am not sure if the investigation will take its course after he already cleared Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano, chair of the Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee (Phisgoc), of any involvement in the alleged irregularities.

Like the President, I do not believe that Cayetano, who has taken the lead role in the preparation of the SEA Games, is among those who might have misappropriated the multi-billion sportsfest funding. But command responsibility must always be the norm.

You cannot start an investigation if only the subordinates are to blame.

Anyway, with the good showing of the Philippine athletes that continue to dominate the 30th SEA Games with already 56 gold, 35 silver, and 20 bronze in the medal standing for a total of 111 medals (as of this writing), I believe that the investigation on the alleged corruption in the handling of funds will be overshadowed by the honors our new heroes in the games will bring to the country.

And to this, the additional incentives to our medalists-gold-silver-bronze medals as promised by the President on top of the cash bonanza provided by law should immediately be given to the deserving athletes.

Kung pera, diretso na lang sa recipient. Huwag na lang ipadaan sa ibang tao. Mr. President, you know what I mean!

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Vice President Leni Robredo promised to release her findings on the government’s anti-drug campaign after the country’s hosting of the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games that will end on Dec. 11.
While we’re yet to know what this finding is all about, my thinking is that the President is not comfortable with it.

She was fired as co-chair of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (Icad) only 18 days afte Duterte appointed her, allegedly for failing to contribute to the anti-drug campaign.

“I’m afraid she would mess up,” the President was quoted to have said.

The Duterte administration will only have two more years to succeed or fail in its fight against illegal drugs which the President himself in the past interviews admitted he can’t solve it even at the end of his term.

Since Robredo’s report will be based on her short stint as Icad chair and, according to her would be for the benefit of the anti-drug campaign, then why not just keep it to herself and the President instead of having this publicize?

For sure, her intention to disclose her drug war findings publicly has no blessings from her colleagues in the committee where she obtained her findings. By divulging this without their permission might put the Vice President in bad light or jeopardize the government anti-drug campaign, although the President seemed to have lost hope to stop the menace.

Pag-usapan na lang muna, Ma’am Leni. Hindi naman mahirap kausapin ang Presidente natin!

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