- Former undersecretary defended SAP Bong Go against allegations regarding a special treatment that happened during his filing of COC.
- She said that the SAP did not receive any special treatment and the situation was caused by the overwhelming amount of supporters.
Former Tourism Undersecretary Kat De Castro took to Facebook to clarify the allegedly false report that ABS-CBN’s Ron Gagalac made during the October 15 episode of TV Patrol.
In the report Gagalac said that SAP Christopher “Bong” Go has filed his candidacy for the 2019 midterm elections. “Mismong ang Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte ang kasama niya dito sa COMELEC at iba pang mga miyembro ng gabinete. Halos napuno ang kwartong ito dahil bukod sa entourage at sa security ng pangulo, may ilang cabinet members din ang sumama kay SAP Bong Go, mga taga Malacañang, at ilan pang mga supporters.”
The reporter further said that the Special Assistant to the President has violated a regulation when it comes to filing the COC.
“Ang patakaran ng COMELEC Bernadette ay dapat hanggang apat na tao man lang ang dapat isama ng kandidato sa filing of COC. Pero hindi ito nasunod kanina. Lahat ng nag file ng COC simula pa nung isang linggo ay sumunod sa patakaran. Kaya ang tingin ng iba ay nagkaroon ng special treatment ang COMELEC kay SAP Bong Go.”
De Castro fired back and said that she disagrees with the report as Bong Go initially only had one companion, which was President Rodrigo Duterte.
I watched Ron Gagalac’s report on SAP Bong Go’s filing at the Comelec. The angle was while the other candidates followed the rules of Comelec (only 4 companions are allowed per candidate), SAP Bong Go was allegedly given the “special treatment” by the Comelec. That’s how I understood Ron’s report.
I for one disagree. I was there. SAP originally only had one companion… no less than the President himself. The President, obviously, had an entourage, mostly PSGs. However, the number of Bong Go supporters was overwhelming. Hence, when PRRD and BG arrived, people started moving forward. Everyone wanted to shake hands with both men. Comelec on the other hand only had a few policemen and and a handful of security guards to barricade the crowd and the main entrance. When PRRD and BG went in, nakalusot ang ibang supporters. The other officials were already inside the Comelec even before PRRD and BG arrived.
She added that Bong Go never had special treatment as the incident was a result of the overwhelming amount of supporters and that he never asked for it.
So no, SAP Bong Go did not personally break any Comelec rule. The report should have mentioned that the number of supporters was too much to bear. Comelec, for its lean number of security, would not have been able to handle it.
Let’s not make it appear that BG was given special treatment. He never asked for it.