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Bacolod City, Philippines Friday, November 29, 2019
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Cayetano ready to face probe
on SEA Games controversies


Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee (Phisgoc) chairman, House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano on Thursday said he is ready to face any investigation into the controversies surrounding the country's hosting of the 30th Southeast Asian Games.

"Hold me accountable. SEA Games Organizing Committee accountable. I won't hide. I would show up at the Senate, the Ombudsman," Cayetano said.

Cayetano noted that he would show up at any investigation on the issues hounding the SEA Games after the events are done.

"Allow us to have successful games. After the SEA Games, any investigation, any finding, [I'm ready to face it])," he said.

President Rodrigo Duterte is looking to probe allegations of corruption hounding the Philippines’ hosting of the biennial meet.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said Duterte was “displeased” by what he has been hearing about the regional multi-sport, which will run from Nov. 30 to Dec. 11.

Foreign and local athletes and journalists have complained of problems with accommodation, food, facilities, transportation, among others.

“The President is not pleased by what he has been hearing about the certain snafu, certain delays, certain allegations of athletes not being fed properly, of athletes arriving late or not on time delivered to their places of rest or residence. He's displeased,” Panelo said in an interview.

Panelo, however, said any investigation should be done after the event as he encouraged the public to watch and support the athletes competing in the 12-day biennial meet.

On Tuesday, Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) chair Dante Jimenez said there would be an immediate investigation into the supposed blunders hounding the SEA Games once a complaint is lodged before his office.

While a complaint has yet to be filed, Jimenez said the PACC may launch a “motuproprio” (on its own) investigation into the supposed mistakes committed by SEA Games organizers.

Phisgoc executive director Ramon Suzara assured that all expenses pertaining to the hosting of the Games are aboveboard.

“Everything is above board. We have nothing to hide. House Speaker Cayetano will not allow this SEA Games to be tainted with irregularities,” Suzara said.*PNA


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