SPECIAL Assistant to the President (SAP) Christopher “Bong” Go on Monday said President Rodrigo Duterte advised him to tell “the truth only” as he faced the Senate’s investigation into the controversial Philippine Navy’s P15.7-billion frigate deal.
Go reportedly intervened in the procurement process of the Navy’s controversial selection of the combat management systems supplier — an allegation that he has denied.
“(Tell) the truth only,” Go said in a text message to reporters, when asked about the President’s advice to him.
The President’s top aide and other Cabinet members are in today’s hearing by the Senate Committee on National Defense and Security, headed by Sen. Gregorio Honasan 2nd.
Go reportedly backed a South Korean company as supplier of the combat management system for two frigates ordered by the Navy.
The contract to acquire frigates for the Philippine Navy was negotiated by the administration of President Benigno Aquino 3rd but was signed in August 2016 under the Duterte administration.
In a statement on Sunday, Palace spokesman Harry Roque said the hearing would be a “welcome opportunity” for Go to shed light on the matter.
“Expect Go to tell all, and as instructed by the President, he would likely demand an open and transparent Senate inquiry to show that he… has nothing to hide as he would squarely answer questions, in full view of the public,” he said. CATHERINE S. VALENTE