Czech Ambassador Josef Rychtar accuses top government officials in the Aquino administration are protecting those he implicated involved in an extortion attempt for an assurance to secure a contract for the modernization of Metro Rail Transit 3 (MRT3) line. He also accused Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya of a coverup by not acting on his allegations. —Coming from an honorable official from another country, this looks like a challenge to our present administration to give due attention and appropriate action to a significant issue.
Press Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) answered all Rychtar’s concerns and should reply to his new allegations.
“This is a DOTC matter on which their spokesman has already stated their position as may be gleaned from online news sources. We see no need to comment further,” Coloma said. —It may be reasonable for the palace to say that Ambassador Rychtar’s concerns be answered by the proper office or department, but saying the no comment words makes the people question their stand against this scandal.
Rychtar claimed that some DOTC officials, including MRT general manager Al Vitangcol, demanded $30 million from Czech train coach supplier Inekon for it to secure the contract to provide several coaches for the modernization of the Metro Rail Transit 3 (MRT 3) line.
In an affidavit submitted to the House of Representatives, Rychtar said the alleged extortion attempt was undertaken during a dinner attended by Inekon Group board chairman Josef Husek, an Inekon executive named Haloun, Vitangcol, a businessman named Wilson De Vera, and a certain M. de la Cruz.
Rychtar said that Vitangcol left after the dinner, while the group headed to Rychtar’s residence to continue the discussion about the MRT project.
That was when, Rychtar said, De Vera attempted to extort from the Inekon officials. Rychtar had earlier asserted that De Vera was acting as Vitangcol’s emissary. —An honorable foreign official would think twice before making serious allegations such as this before our government, unless he is sure about it. For this can have a deep impact to our relation with their country.
Let me just quote this before my piece:
Ito po ang aking ikatlong SONA, at parang kailan lang nang nagsimula tayong mangarap. Parang kailan lang nang sabay-sabay tayong nagpasyang tahakin ang tuwid na daan. Parang kailan lang nang sinimulan nating iwaksi ang wang-wang, hindi lamang sa kalsada kundi sa sistemang panlipunan.
Dalawang taon na ang nakalipas mula nang sinabi ninyo, “Sawa na kami sa korupsyon; sawa na kami sa kahirapan.” Oras na upang ibalik ang isang pamahalaang tunay na kakampi ng taumbayan. President Benigno S. Aquino III
I guess we Filipinos are just fed up with the overly familiar word associated with the government, and that is corruption. I voted for our president because I know he can do a lot to help regain the people’s trust to the government. And I do believe that he is also against corruption, same as his parents. It always shows in the words he spoken in every State of the Nation Address (SONA) he had. —I believe our president won’t just let this case slip through. Yahweh bless.