This government is barking up on the wrong tree.
A netizen shared on Facebook his disappointment with the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte after the former Secretary of Tourism Ramon Jimenez was slapped with a graft complaint by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).
Arnold Liong, a respected and established personality in the advertising industry, admits that he voted for the president during the 2016 presidential election.
“I will admit that I voted for DU30 with the optimism that he would do something for this country that the previous administration could not do. I’m seriously having second thoughts that I made the right choice,”
Liong wrote on Facebook.
The straw that broke the camel’s back, so to speak, is the decision of the NBI to file graft charges against Jimenez before the Office of the Ombudsman.
The complaint is in connection with the P1-billion ad campaign of the DOT during the time President Noynoy Aquino. It stemmed from a letter-request from Tourism Promotions Board Chair Cesar Montano who alleged that the project did not go through the proper bidding process.
However, many observers opined that the complaint against Jimenez is just a smokescreen in order to cover up the corruption and other irregularities of the present DOT under Secretary Wanda Teo.
Teo is under fire for the DOT’s P60-million advertisement placements made to the media company of his brother, Ben Tulfo, a blocktimer at state-run PTV, in 2017.
Liong blasted Duterte for allowing his government to destroy the good name and reputation of Jimenez.
“If this president would allow shams like these…dragging down a good and upright man, who devoted his time and commitment to serving his country amidst his ailing wife, on purely fabricated charges just so current crooks like Teo and Tulfo can get away scot free, then there is no place in my heart that I can continue giving this government the benefit of the doubt that it can be any better than the rest,”
The netizen claimed that having known Jimenez all his advertising life, he has never doubted the former DOT secretary’s integrity.
“My belief and support for Mon J is solid,” Liong declared.
“He is the most honest, above-board person I have known. And to smear his integrity and reputation with shit like this is enough to change my political conviction,” he added.
Liong further added that Jimenez need not join the government as he had a successful career in advertising but decided to enter public service nevertheless in order to help the country’s tourism.
“He was rich and was successful from his advertising career but he chose to serve because he believed he could do wonders for Philippine tourism. And now, they dare throw this crap on him?” Liong angrily said.
Jimenez himself said that the “charges” are meant to divert public attention from the controversy hounding Teo and PTV4 but says that he will use this development in order to explain to the public how the DOT under his watch had observed transparency and accountability.
“In a way, I would welcome an opportunity to dramatize the stark contrast between our devotion to transparency and accountability and the crude methods of media planning and buying that appear to be the prevailing practice today,”