MANILA—President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday clarified that the arrest order against the owner Mighty Corporation was for economic sabotage and not for bribery attempts.
In an interview at Malacañang, Duterte said that he ordered the arrest of Mighty president Alexander Wong Chu King for the alleged manufacture of fake cigarette stamps.
“Yes I ordered his arrest. He’s the one behind it (fake cigarette stamps),” he said.
“Hindi lang ‘yan. It’s not a matter of BIR eh. Tax laws. It’s falsification,” Duterte said.
Earlier, Palace officials said that attempts to bribe the President were discussed during Monday’s Cabinet meeting.
Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said that “in time past, there was a certain attempt to influence him (Duterte) financially.”
Meanwhile, Presidential chief legal counsel Salvador Panelo pointed at Mighty Corp. for the alleged bribe try.
Both officials said however that Duterte rejected the bribe.
But the President said that what was discussed were two instances that happened in the past which he did not consider as outright bribes.
He did not also specify who were involved in the two instances.
“No, I said there was a Christmas gift. It was a gun during… last Christmas. Sabi ko, hindi ko tinanggap,” he said.
Duterte said the other happened when he was still Davao City mayor when somebody was asking him for a favor.
“I said I am not into it,” he narrated.
“Pero pag-tindig niya may naiwan doon na parang hindi naman, wala naman bribery, kasi wala naman sinabi. Parang gratis. Pinahabol ko kay Bong (Go). Akala ko… kung alak, tatanggapin ko. Hindi naman ako umiinom eh, eh ‘di binibigay ko na lang. Pero ‘yung tiningnan ‘nong aide ko, pera. Sabi ko ihabol mo kung saan ‘yung gagong ‘yan. So nahabol niya sa eroplano mismo,” Duterte said.