• ‘I am not corrupt’


    INTERIOR Secretary Ismael Sueno maintained on Tuesday that he did no wrong, and that he is prepared to clear his name and face any investigation.

    “I wholeheartedly accept the decision of the President. It is his call if he wants me in his Cabinet or not. But for the record, Mr. President, and I can say this with all honesty and sincerity, hindi po ako corrupt (I am not corrupt),” Sueno stressed.

    He said allegations hurled against him should have been validated, adding that the President was fed the wrong information by those who were “salivating for his post.”

    “If only the President asked DILG personnel from the central down to the regional and field offices, he would have known who amongst us are more credible and trustworthy,” he said.

    Interior Secretary Ismael Sueno

    “My conscience is clear. Inuulit ko po, wala akong ginawa o ginagawang anomalya (I repeat, I did not do and I am not doing any anomaly),” he said.

    One of the issues hurled against Sueno in the confidential letter sent to Malacañang is the alleged anomalous payment of the Rosenbauer fire trucks acquired by the DILG.

    But Sueno said he could not have prevented the purchase of the fire trucks because it was a perfected contract entered into by the previous administration.

    “My role was to abide by the provision of the contract which says that I should ensure that the fire trucks to be delivered are in good condition so my team and I had to go to Austria to inspect them,” he said.

    He added that the fire trucks were acquired cheap and under a soft loan agreement with minimal interest.

    “The Austrian fire trucks are new compared to the locally-made ones which are cheaper but are reconditioned and which are good only for a few years. But then again, this is beside the point. The contract is perfected and I only had to implement it,” he said.

    Business as usual
    Despite Suneo’s sacking, it was business as usual at the DILG.

    Assistant Secretary Rico Judge Echiverri, the department’s spokesman, said there will be no break or disruption of operations even if the President has yet to name Sueno’s replacement.

    He admitted that news of Sueno’s firing shocked DILG personnel.

    “It was so fast, what is happening here really shocked everyone in the DILG,” Echiverri said.

    The DILG had been rocked by the dispute between Sueno and three of his undersecretaries — John Castriciones, Jesus Hinlo and Emily Padilla.

    But Echiveri said the department will continue to implement Sueno’s programs “because it is business as usual.”

    Castriciones echoed Echiverri, saying Sueno’s exit will not affect the responsibilities and duties of DILG personnel.

    “Through other officials like the assistant secretaries, we will continue the services to be provided by the [DILG],” he told reporters.

    Castriciones said he and his colleagues will not file charges against Sueno.

    “But if the President says so, then that is when we will be filing charges. It’s the President’s discretion.”



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    1. Of course you say you’re not corrupt. It’s a big mistake for Sueno to talk to the Catholic Bishops and Priests who Duterte hates. Duterte doesn’t like those hypocrites with good reason…the Catholic Church’s hypocrisy and the pervert priests’ abuses as well as Duterte himself being once a victim of child molestation by a priest. Why did Sueno only talk to the Bishops only now and not when he was still a cabinet member to explain to them and ask them to understand Duterte’s thinking?

      Furthermore, Sueno’s going to DILG office to say good bye to the employees was an excuse for him to defend himself in a press conference. He said he has forgiven the under secretaries who caused his firing but was attacking them during the press conference. He said he would continue to support Duterte but was hurting not being given the chance to explain his side. He said the house, hotel, and his family trip to Austria were funded by his successful rich daughter who’s a doctor and other children who’re successful businessmen.
      How successful and rich is the daughter and the other children? The BIR should look into their financial records. It’s easy for someone like Sueno to pass the questionable wealth to his children. If I were Duterte, I would sue Sueno for corruption and not just simply firing him.

    2. Juan Alphonse DeMaio on

      Pedro from the coffee shop said, “This is the lightning strike in the middle of the calm that Pres Duterte was waiting for. He can finally appoint Sandra Cam to a cabinet position by virtue of a ‘natural’ vacancy.” And the train keeps going to its trek towards the bridge-less cliff.

      Guess who got Secretary Sueno fired for not allowing corruption in his department ? This is harvest time, time to fill up the rice granary and top up the savings account for retirement. You just got in their way Secretary Sueno. Not an April’s Fool day joke.

    3. No questionable or sacked high profile PH bureaucrat or politician in recent memory should ever be branded as ‘corrupt’ because remember we are the ‘only christian nation in the far east’. It is only outside groups who are ranking us as one of the reigning top most corrupt country in the world. And only moral groups hereabouts are coming up with estimates as to how much billions of pesos is annually going to corruption. They say it should be enough to build our public schools, health facilities, roads and bridges, etc.