Press Briefing

Press Briefing of Presidential Spokesperson and Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Secretary Salvador S. Panelo

Event Press Briefing
Location New Executive Bldg., Malacanang

USEC. ROCKY IGNACIO:  Good afternoon MPC. Let’s now have Presidential Spokesperson and Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo.

SEC. PANELO:  Good noon, MPC members.

ARJAY BALINBIN/BUSINESS WORLD:  I don’t know sir if you are aware of this, but ES texted us that OP has officially informed PCGG that it interposes no objections to the proposed activities relative to the disposal of the Marcos jewelry collection.

SEC. PANELO:  Then PCGG should now undertake the process of auctioning the Marcos jewelries.

 ARJAY BALINBIN/BUSINESS WORLD:  Alright, thank you. Sir, another question. Sir, update sa government contracts being reviewed by the DOJ. Kasi sabi ni Secretary Menardo Guevarra, two weeks ago dapat daw masa-submit na iyong report to the President by the end of May. I don’t know sir kung umabot na po sa OP.

 SEC. PANELO:  Wala pa akong information. I will text Menard mamaya, Secretary Menard.

 ARJAY BALINBIN/BUSINESS WORLD:  Alright, thank you.

TINA MENDEZ/PHILIPPINE STAR:  Sir, good afternoon. Sir, na-recall na po ba ‘yung memo ni Presidente na tungkol sa travel ban ng mga government officials sa Canada o any action taken—

 SEC. PANELO:  Hindi ko pa alam. Pero I think, parang si Secretary Locsin mentioned something about that.

TINA MENDEZ/PHILIPPINE STAR:  I think he mentioned about iyong pinababalik na iyong mga diplomats sa Canada, but none yet on the government officials. ‘Yung may memorandum to prevent—reduce trips and interaction to Canada.

SEC. PANELO:  Hindi. ‘Di ba ang gumawa ng memong ‘yun si Secretary Locsin, ‘di siya rin ang magre-recall noon.

TINA MENDEZ/PHILIPPINE STAR:  No sir, si ES po ‘yung gumawa noong memo.

SEC. PANELO:  Si ES? O eh ‘di si Secretary Locsin siguro. Most likely it will come, and the very reason for the recall is precisely that waste issue. Since that has been resolved, it goes without saying that memo will be recalled… unless there is another serious issue. But I don’t think there is one.

GENALYN KABILING/MANILA BULLETIN:  Sir, the Senate said it lacks time to pass the ROTC bill. Is the Palace disappointed with this development?

SEC. PANELO:  If it lacks time, there is another new Senate coming up so I don’t think that’s a problem.

GENALYN KABILING/MANILA BULLETIN:  Are you hopeful the next Congress would pass this as a priority measure again?

SEC. PANELO:  Oh, I think the members of the Senate also like this particular bill.

ROSALIE COZ/UNTV:  Sir, ibang issue lang po. Sir, regarding po sa pag-cut short ng speech ni President Duterte sa Nikkei forum last Friday. Foreign Secretary Teddy Locsin believes it is an act of rudeness sa part po ng Nikkei organizers. Hindi daw po dapat lilimitahan iyong speech ng mga heads of state sa mga ganoong event. So…

SEC. PANELO:  Was it Nikkei organizers that did it or our own protocol? Kasi if you will notice, iyong protocol natin pumunta rin sa kaniya at pinapaalalahanan siyang mayroon siyang meeting with the Prime Minister. Mayroon talaga siyang meeting kay Prime Minister, nag-aantay na si Pri—‘di ba sabi niya, “Nag-aantay na pala si Prime Minister.

ROSALIE COZ/UNTV:  So sir, hindi po kayo naniniwala—hindi ninyo po sinasang-ayunan iyong paniniwala ni—

SEC. PANELO:  Hindi. Kung Nikkei ang nagsabi, eh tama si Secretary Locsin. Pero napansin ko, pumunta rin iyong protocol, parang seconds lang ang pagitan eh.

ROSALIE COZ/UNTV:  So, you also believe that it was an act of rudeness sa part po ng Nikkei organizers?

SEC. PANELO:  Rude iyon, kasi you don’t stop a president from delivering a speech, a head of state. But as far as the protocol is concerned, we have to remind the President na mayroon pa siyang schedule na iba.

ROSALIE COZ/UNTV:  By saying so sir, so nainsulto po ‘yung Pangulo?

SEC. PANELO:  Well, he did feel insulted. He made fun of it if you noticed, he made light of it.

ROSALIE COZ/UNTV:  Does it have an effect sa relationship po ng Philippines at Japan?

SEC. PANELO:  Oh no, I don’t think so. Hindi naman siguro. Most likely, if I may hazard a guess, baka kaya rin nagpasabi kasi baka kinontak na rin sila ng Nikkei orga—organization ng ano, office ng Prime Minister to remind the President. Hindi natin alam kung anong nakalagay na note.

ROSALIE COZ/UNTV:  Pero hindi naman po na-orient ang Philippine delegation na may time limit, kasi po umalis din po doon sa speech si President eh, twice.

SEC. PANELO:  None that I know of. Hindi ko alam, walang sinabi ang protocol. Pero actually, alam mo ni hindi natin alam kung anong nakalagay doon sa note. Sinabi lang ni Presidente na pinapa-stop siya, ‘di ba? Puwede rin naman na… baka nagbibiro na naman si Presidente. I don’t think that’s an issue. It would be an issue kung talagang, “Oy, tama na ‘yan. Mr. President huwag ka ng magsalita,” ibang usapan na iyon.

ROSALIE COZ/UNTV:  Pero sir, this instance po will not hinder the President to attend other Nikkei conferences in the future?

SEC. PANELO:  I don’t think so. Si Presidente naman eh, he’s a very reasonable man.

ROSALIE COZ/UNTV:  Thank you, sir.

PIA GUTIERREZ/ABS-CBN:  Sir, balik po sa ROTC. Now that the President has certified as urgent itong mandatory ROTC training, what can the Palace say about iyong mga criticisms that ROTC is a form of fostering blind obedience and discourage critical thinking among students.

SEC. PANELO:  I don’t think so, because when I was in college I underwent Reserved Officer Training Course. You’re thought there how to handle firearms, how to have discipline; you are lectured on many things even on laws, even on history. Kumuha ka ba ng ROTC? Dahil parang—ibig sabihin mahina iyong teacher mo, hindi kayo binigyan ng [laughs]… Sa amin, ganoon eh. In the place where I graduated from, University of Caceres ni Naga City, ganoon ka-extensive iyong ROTC training course namin.

PIA GUTIERREZ/ABS-CBN:  Pero kinu-question sir iyong pagiging mandatory kasi. Iyong nag-o-oppose po doon sa mandatory ROTC are saying that iyong mga sinasabi na discipline and nationalism, patriotism could be thought in other subjects or in other activities at hindi kailangan daw sir na mandatory iyong ROTC.

SEC. PANELO:  Ayaw lang nila siguro iyon. Pero alam ninyo, in other countries mandatory iyon; dapat talaga mandatory, dapat nga—ako, I share the view that all citizens, able bodied citizens of the Philippines, male… kahit na female should be required to have compulsory military training for our own security. Pagdating ng panahon, para tayo… marunong tayo. Para sa ating lahat iyon.

PIA GUTIERREZ/ABS-CBN:  Sir, based sa mga nakikita ninyong aksiyon ngayon at paraan ng pag-iisip ng mga kabataan, do you think na kailangan talaga na magkaroon ng mandatory ROTC training for them to be disciplined or to be instilled sa kanila iyong nationalism?

SEC. PANELO:  I think so, because the onset of technology parang ang concentration lahat puro sa ano eh, sa high-tech instruments like telephone, laptop at kung anu-ano pa. Parang wala nang—kulang na, wala na talagang ano eh, wala nang disiplina.

PIA GUTIERREZ/ABS-CBN:  Thank you, sir.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  Sir, iwanan ko muna iyong ROTC. Iyon pong sa sin tax sir, sa tobacco excise tax. I think the lower chamber, the House of Representatives will endeavor to pass their own or maybe adopt the Senate version—

SEC. PANELO:  Pati Senate yata hindi ba nagpasa?

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  Kahapon, sir. So can we say definitely that if it reaches the President’s table, he will sign it?

SEC. PANELO:  Oh, certainly. I think so. Yes, that was certified urgent by him ‘di ba?

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  Yeah. Sir, just a soundbyte ‘no. Why is this important, signing the tobacco excise tax?

SEC. PANELO:  Well we need funds, we need funds apart from trying to discourage people from killing themselves [laughs] in a way. Kasi hindi ba sinasabi nila, smoking cigarette causes cancer and is dangerous to one’s health.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  Pa-shift lang ako nang konti. Sir, doon po sa—

SEC. PANELO:  Oy, that reminds me ‘no. I think this is important for you to know and to our teachers. I just received from Secretary Briones, coming from the Department of Budget Secretary, that if you increase ten thousand pesos for every teacher in this country, it will cost us hundred fifty billion pesos. That is why we appeal to our teachers that since this is a huge amount, medyo haba-habaan ninyo lang ang pasensiya, talagang maghahanap tayo ng pera para sa inyo.

 JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  I’d like to pick up on that, sir. So, ibig sabihin, sir, the salary increase is not doable?

SEC. PANELO:  Hindi. Ang sinasabi ko lang, masyadong malaki na kailangan talagang—iyong mga economic managers ginagawan ng paraan kung saan nila kukunin, saan nila ita-transfer iyong… whatever. Basta we are doing something about it.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  So we will increase their salaries, but they would have to wait ‘no?

SEC. PANELO:  Well, the President has committed himself and he has not renege on any commitment he has made during the presidential elections.

 JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  Sir, iyong 10,000 do you think that’s a negotiable rate, maybe… go down a little bit—

SEC. PANELO:  Iyon yata ang hinihingi nila, di ba.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  Ah okay, so you will commit to the 10,000?

SEC. PANELO:  Not necessarily, iyon ang—basta iyon lang ang message na tinanggap ko.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  Pero may pag-asa naman po, hindi naman po ito shutting down the proposal, ‘no?

SEC. PANELO:  Baka, baka, hindi ko alam ha. Baka iyong… kumbaga installment, baka gawin installment, hindi ko alam kung ano ang mangyayari. But what is I think certain is that the President really wants to increase the salaries of the teachers.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  Sir, just one last point. Doon po sa Marcos jewelries, wala namang objections iyong OP except that ang sabi kasi ni SOJ, sir, is that the proceeds of the auction sale should directly benefit the people. When you say that, not necessarily CARP or it can fund other projects of the government?

SEC. PANELO:  Yeah, it applies to everything that will benefit the people by way of whatever projects.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  So, can it fund the teacher’s salaries?

SEC. PANELO:  Puwede siguro din, di ba.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  All the 2 billion lang sir.

SEC. PANELO:  Hanapin natin iyong 50 billion.

TINA MENDEZ/PHIL. STAR:  Sir, baka mas alam ninyo, iyong sa PCGG law. I think there was a provision saying na proceeds of illegal wealth should go to CARP. Hindi naman yata na-dissolve iyong PCGG?

SEC. PANELO:  I’ll check on that, kung specific iyong ano.

TINA MENDEZ/PHIL. STAR:  Although iyong CARP law, meron yatang nag-lapse—

SEC. PANELO:  Puwede naman, even assuming na merong ganoong provision, Congress can always amend that.

TINA MARALIT/DAILY TRIBUNE:  Sir, good afternoon. Sir, in an international security forum in Singapore, China admitted to deploying troops and weapons to the South China Sea and said that they have every right to build defense facilities on natural and man-made islands in the area. So, with this admission po, do you think this will somehow change the President’s stand regarding our claims, regarding our territorial dispute with them or at least reconsider how to go about it?

SEC. PANELO:  But he has not changed his position on China. As far as he is concerned parts of the South China Sea are ours per the arbitral ruling, hindi naman nababago iyong posisyon niya roon eh.

TINA MARALIT/DAILY TRIBUNE:  Sir, lastly po, iyong reaction po to Acting US Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan that the United States will not ignore daw po Chinese behavior in the South China Sea and that… he was short of saying na they will have more presence in the area?

SEC. PANELO:  Well, as far as I am concerned anyway, they have been saying that, but they are not doing it. Parang puro posturing lang ang nangyayari sa kanila eh.

GREG GREGORIO/TV5:  May we get the Palace reaction tungkol doon sa allegation ni Mon Tulfo against Secretary Andanar, na Secretary Andanar and Ben Tulfo are the ones who manipulated  daw po iyong controversial DOT-PTV deal before?

SEC. PANELO:  I will not preempt Secretary Andanar’s comments or response to that. I’ll leave it to him to respond.

GREG GREGORIO /TV5:  But will the Palace call out Mr. Mon Tulfo since he is appointed special envoy by the President?

SEC. PANELO:  Mr. Tulfo has raised some concerns and Secretary Andanar I’m sure will be responding to those concerns.

JULIE AURELIO/PDI:  Sir, just a follow up to the China question. You said that the US has been posturing  in the South China Sea saying that it will not – as Tina said – it will no longer Chinese actions in the maritime dispute. Does the Philippine want the US to do anything at all; since you are saying that ginagawa naman nila iyon dati pa?

SEC. PANELO:  Well, the Philippines would want stability at this part of the world, in that part of the world. Philippines’ position is that every country has the right to use the waters in the South China Sea as well as the air space. And we want peace and quiet in that area. So anything that will provide such kind of atmosphere we are for it. If the presence of the US will make it so, then that’s good for all of us – all of the claimants.

JULIE AURELIO/PDI:  Do we have like any parameters as to hanggang saan lang puwedeng mag-act iyong US sa South China Sea?

SEC. PANELO: Hindi natin alam, kasi ang US you cannot also impose on them kung ano ang gagawin nila, nasa sa kanila  na iyon.

JULIE AURELIO/PDI:  What I mean is, sir, up to what limits lang do you think sila puwedeng mag-act in the South China Sea so as to maintain peace and stability in the region.

SEC. PANELO:  That will be left to their judgment, kung hanggang ano ang limits nila.

 ARJAY BALINBIN/BUSINESS WORLD:  Sir, would the Palace ask again the Tulfo siblings or brothers to return the 60 million being questioned by the Commission in Audit? It’s about the ads payment with the DOT.

SEC. PANELO:  I don’t know if I’m correct. That is supposed to being investigated by the DOJ?  So, it’s DOJ’s call.

 ARJAY BALINBIN/BUSINESS WORLD:  The Commission on Audit has been asking them to return the money and even the DOT with Secretary Puyat. But the Tulfo’s haven’t.

SEC. PANELO:  Then DOJ will have to do something about it.

ARJAY BALINBIN/BUSINESS WORLD:  So what’s your call, sir?

SEC. PANELO:  That’s DOJ’s call. Their mandate is to prosecute those who have violated the law.

ARJAY BALINBIN/BUSINESS WORLD:  But of course the Palace wants the Tulfos to return the money.

SEC. PANELO:  The Palace always wants that laws are not only enforced but are obeyed to   its fullest extent. As we said there are no sacred cows in this government, friends or allies.

ARJAY BALINBIN/BUSINESS WORLD:  Do you want them to return the money as soon as possible?

SEC. PANELO: Depends on the DOJ, because it’s their call, they will have to do something legally about it.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:      Sir, just a little bit on China ano. In China, during the bilateral meeting ni Presidente and President Xi, he mentioned the arbitral tribunal ‘no and then in Japan he says that is it right for any country to own the whole sea or whole ocean. Are we detecting here increase in terms of boldness of the statement of the President and is this—can we call it as a shift probably in the rhetoric of the President in the sense that now he is  publicly and slowly asserting our win in our sovereign rights of the area.

SEC. PANELO:  I think he is expressing the sentiment of all countries of the world with respect to the use of the seas relatively to the law of the seas and the use of these seas.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  We will not—going back to the earlier question, sir. We will not object to a US presence in the area?

SEC. PANELO:  Which area, our area?

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  South China Sea and probably somewhere near the West Philippine Sea.

SEC. PANELO:  We will object if they will come to our area.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  US sir ha, US.

SEC. PANELO:  Yeah. Because we are supposed to be a sovereign country, no country should also come into our territory without our consent and knowledge.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  Or can they stay sir if—kasi sabi po n’yo po kanina, we want peace and stability in the region and if US presence will bring about that desire. We don’t—it’s going to be good for us. So, do we desire—

 SEC. PANELO:  Good for all, not only for us.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7:  Do we desire a US presence in the area?

SEC. PANELO:  We desire peace and quiet in that area. No matter upon whose initiative coming from any country.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7: Sir, is it true na—what happened to the program of Mr. Erwin Tulfo yesterday?

SEC. PANELO: Hindi ko alam. What’s the latest? Hindi ko yata alam. Tell me.

 JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7: They didn’t air yata yesterday, sir. So is it—

SEC. PANELO:  Baka naman naka-leave.

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7: Usec. Ignacio, can you help us here?

SEC. PANELO: Si Erwin nasa US?

JOSEPH MORONG/GMA7: Ah, so nothing naman, sir, na the program is being suspended or anything like that?

SEC. PANELO: Wala akong alam about that. Next question, AC.

ANNE CLAIRE NICHOLLS/CNN PHIL: Sir, going back to the issue involving Tulfo and Secretary Andanar. Sir, since the Ombudsman is also investigating the DOT anomalous contract, alleged anomalous contract, is the President considering maybe replacing muna si Secretary Andanar since he is being connected to that deal? I mean, wala pa naman desisyon iyong Ombudsman but matagal nang naumpisahan iyon; it’s been a year, if I’m correct.

SEC. PANELO: He has not made any announcement on that, nor a statement.

 ANNE CLAIRE NICHOLLS/CNN PHIL: Okay. But since Mon Tulfo was saying or is saying that he has information linking Secretary Andanar to that anomalous deal, and sinasabi niya na involved po talaga, is this something that the President will consider, sir?

SEC. PANELO: I think, it’s the Ombudsman or whoever investigating body that is investigating it that will consider those statements because that will come in the form of a witness statement.

ANNE CLAIRE NICHOLLS/CNN PHIL: But it’s okay with the President that Secretary Andanar is working for him despite these allegations, sir?

SEC. PANELO: You know, it’s a basic law that allegations are not proof.

ANNE CLAIRE NICHOLLS/CNN PHIL: But previously, sir, with the other government officials that he fired, those are based on allegations also. So how is this different?

SEC. PANELO: Not necessarily. The allegations are there, but usually – not only usually – the President makes discreet investigation.

ANNE CLAIRE NICHOLLS/CNN PHIL: So on this case, wala pa siyang personal discreet investigation?

SEC. PANELO: Hindi natin alam. Most likely, mayroon.

PIA GUTIERREZ/ABS-CBN: Sir, iyong doon lang sa Smartmatic. Because the Comelec is saying that there is a need for a legal basis before it bans Smartmatic from participating in the next elections or before it junks Smartmatic as a technology provided in the next elections. Ito pong mga sinasabi ni President Duterte na allegations of fraud, is that enough basis for them to drop Smartmatic, sir?

SEC. PANELO: The President’s position is very clear. There have been allegations of certain glitches that somehow affect the impression that this Smartmatic is competent to handle the … as server. If you recall, during the presidential elections, there were strong allegations that the President lost three million votes. And presently, the opposition is also complaining about the votes that they got, although not enough to make them win, they still say na kukonti; mas malaki raw.

So the point of the President is: kung mayroong mga ganitong reklamo, siguro tingnan ninyo baka iyong server ninyo ay kailangan ninyo nang palitan. Kasi he doesn’t want that any election in the future would be tainted with a whiff of fraud or allegations that will produce the affect of people doubting the credibility of an election. Kaya nga sina-suggest niya, “Tingnan ninyo.”

Now, hindi ko alam iyong sinasabi naman ng Comelec na there should be a legal basis. Hindi ko alam kung ano iyong—ano iyong legal basis?

PIA GUTIERREZ/ABS-CBN: Kasi they’re explaining—kasi part of the procurement, of course, is iyong bidding process. And you have to have legal basis before you ban any supplier from participating in the bidding process for these elections—

SEC. PANELO: The legal basis: if you have not done efficiently what you’re supposed to do. That’s the legal basis.

PIA GUTIERREZ/ABS-CBN: But that, sir, remains to be allegations pa rin, sir, allegations of fraud. That it happened still has not been proven; still allegations—

SEC. PANELO: Hindi, like for instance, iyong mga glitches mo, tapos iyong kontrata mo is to give for instance the results of the elections within a span of time, tapos hindi mo nagawa, oh ‘di mayroon kang breach. Oh di may legal basis ka na.

PIA GUTIERREZ/ABS-CBN: Iyong nakaraan eleksyon, sir, iyong mga glitches are enough to disqualify them in the next bidding process, tama po ba?

SEC. PANELO: Kung iyong glitch will result in the delay, substantial delay in the results, if I were the lawyer, I would argue, “There’s a breach, kasi hindi mo sinunod iyong kontrata mo. Dapat walang delay.”

PIA GUTIERREZ/ABS-CBN: What particular glitch are you referring to, sir?

SEC. PANELO: Hindi ba nagkaroon ng delay, tapos ang daming nagma-malfunction? Dapat hindi nagma-malfunction iyon eh. Ang daming malfunctions eh, kesyo hindi tinatanggap iyong balota, ‘di ba?

PIA GUTIERREZ/ABS-CBN: Sir, iyong delay, sir, you’re referring to iyong delay ng transmission sa Transparency—

SEC. PANELO: Iyong sinasabi nilang six hours, ‘di ba mayroon silang sinasabing six hours delay. Iyon ang nirereklamo ng marami eh.

PIA GUTIERREZ/ABS-CBN: I remember, sir, I asked you that about the delay. And you said na wala naman isyu kasi the same results have been transmitted to the other two servers—

SEC. PANELO: Correct. Yes, but people are using that precisely to question the credibility of the elections.

PIA GUTIERREZ/ABS-CBN: But you said so before, sir—

SEC. PANELO: Sa akin.

PIA GUTIERREZ/ABS-CBN: Ang sabi ninyo, there’s no question of credibility.

SEC. PANELO: Sa akin lang iyon. That’s my perception. But my perception, wala iyan pagdating sa kung ang taumbayan ang nagku-question sa’yo eh. Kahit anong paliwanag mo, kapag pinagdudahan ka na, may problema ka na. iyon ang ayaw ni Presidente, iyong nagkakaroon ng pagdududa ang tao.

JOYCE BALANCIO/DZMM: Sir, regarding nga doon sa gray areas sa dismissal ni Deputy Ombudsman Carandang. Have you already figured it out, sir, if it’s final and executory?

SEC. PANELO: The decision in administrative cases is executory. But—teka muna, si Carandang yata nag-leave.

JOYCE BALANCIO/DZMM: Iyon nga, sir. So anong effect niya doon sa final po niya na leave? Void na rin po?

SEC. PANELO:  Ganoon na nga ang mangyayari doon. Hindi ko alam kung nag-file siya ng certiorari. Wala pa yata. He has 15 days.

JOYCE BALANCIO/DZMM: Technically, sir, his post is already considered vacant?

SEC. PANELO: Yeah.

JOYCE BALANCIO/DZMM: And the President will appoint a new deputy ombudsman?

SEC. PANELO: That’s his call, kung mag-a-appoint na siya o hihintayin niya iyong …

JOYCE BALANCIO/DZMM: Hihintayin, sir, ang?

SEC. PANELO: Iyong kaso, kung magpa-file siya o kung maging final or whatever.

ANNE CLAIRE NICHOLLS/CNN PHIL: Sir, does the Palace have jurisdiction over the Ombudsman and Deputy Ombudsman Carandang? Because there was a Supreme Court ruling yata before saying na walang jurisdiction iyong Palace over the Ombudsman. But do you expect Ombudsman Samuel Martires to still enforce that OP decision?

SEC. PANELO:  I remember mayroon ding sina-cite na case eh, na sinabi ng Supreme Court may jurisdiction. ‘Di ba, parang ganoon eh. I remember mayroong ganoon eh.

ANNE CLAIRE NICHOLLS/CNN PHIL:  So as far as you’re concerned, the OP ruling, sir, should be recognized by Ombudsman Martires? Kasi siya rin iyong mag-i-enforce nung ruling—

SEC. PANELO: Kasi I remember, ‘di ba si Chit Morales, sabi niya she will not enforce, she would not enforce. Oh na kay Ombudsman naman iyan.

ANNE CLAIRE NICHOLLS/CNN PHIL: Bahala na po si Ombudsman Martires?

SEC. PANELO: Yes. And then, bahala na rin si Carandang, if he wants to question. So there will be a final, definitive ruling coming from the Supreme Court when a case is brought before it for decision.

ROSALIE COZ/UNTV: Sorry, sir, I have to ask this question. Kasi some members of the LGBT community reacted to the statement of the President during his speech before the Filipino community.

SEC. PANELO: Na ano?

ROSALIE COZ/UNTV: Iyon pong sinabi niya na dati siyang bakla at nagamot niya po iyong sarili niya when he met Ma’am Honeylet. So was the President serious when he said that he was a gay before?

SEC. PANELO: I will ask him. Pero I don’t think that was … I don’t know—I don’t know if it should offend them. Bakit mao-offend ang gay community? Dapat matutuwa sila.

ROSALIE COZ/UNTV: Impliedly kasi, sir, nabanggit niya po na ginamot niya iyong sarili niya. So parang sinasabi niya na isang disease or disorder iyong pagiging gay when iyon pong mismong World Health Organization ay nagsabi na hindi siya disorder or disease, kung hindi isang sexual orientation po.

SEC. PANELO: Kung it was a sexual orientation, ano naman masama kung palitan niya iyong sexual orientation niya?

ROSALIE COZ/UNTV: Parang sinasabi ng Pangulo na nagagamot iyong pagiging isang gay, na hindi naman po siya disease or disorder kaya po may mga na-offend.

SEC. PANELO: Baka naman ang ibig sabihin niyang gamot eh, nagpalit ako ng sexual orientation ko. Baka hindi naman iyong ganoon ang ibig niyang sabihin. But let me say that the President is always conscious on not offending the sensibilities of these special classes. Ano siya eh, mabait na tao si Presidente eh.

USEC. IGNACIO: Okay, thank you. Thank you, Rosalie. MPC, no more questions? Okay. Thank you, Secretary Panelo.

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Source: PCOO-NIB (News and Information Bureau-Data Processing Center)

 

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