PIA feeds Bacolod journalists interview questions for Bong Go
BACOLOD, Philippines – Bong Go is no longer a public official, having resigned as special assistant to the President to run for senator, but the government’s information agency is still helping get him media mileage.
The Philippine Information Agency here sent local journalists some interview questions to ask Go, who was expected to come with President Rodrigo Duterte to the 39th MassKara Festival on Saturday, October 27.
In a text message to the local media, PIA-Negros Occidental “suggested” some questions to ask Go. These are:
1. Sir message ninyo sa mga taga-Bacolod and sa Masskara event?
2. What makes you busy now that you are no longer with the government?
3. Sir, baket ka tumakbo bilang senador?
4. Sir, tell us about Malasakit Centers?
5. Sir what would be your legislative agenda,sakaling palarin kang manalo bilang senador?
With Go out of government service and his projects carried out as private initiatives, PIA’s support for his activities goes against the agency’s stated functions. On its website it says:
The PIA’s aim is to disseminate information about government programs, projects, and services to the Filipino public, with the final goal of seeing the quality of their lives improved and empowered to participate in the country’s democratic processes.
As the only government information network that can reach the grassroots—spanning 16 regional offices and 78 provincial information centers—the PIA is the country’s chief information arm. Its expertise is development communication. PIA also serves as a public relations firm for specific communication campaigns as requested by agencies under the Office of the President, national government agencies, local government units, government-owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs), government financial institutions (GFIs), special inter-agency committees/councils and government task forces, among others.
The position of Special Assistant to the President (SAP) was created by Duterte in 2016 especially for Go, who had been his personal assistant since his days as Davao City mayor.
While in office, Go was revealed to have intervened in a frigates deal that Korean firms were fighting over. (READ: Duterte admits role in Navy-Bong Go frigates issue)
Companies owned by his father was also found to have cornered P750 million worth of government contracts in the Davao Region.
Months before he resigned as SAP, he vehemently denied any interest in running for senator, but he went around in public gatherings, giving out assistance, and billboards, tarpaulins, and paraphernalia bearing his name and face were in numerous areas across the country.
Civil service watchers said these activities posed possible violations of Republic Act 6713 or the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees.
President Duterte accompanied Go when he filed his certificate of candidacy for senator. The President asked to reschedule the Army's change of command program on that day to adjust his schedule to Go's activity. (READ: Comelec bends COC filing rules to favor Bong Go) – Rappler.com