DA Secretary hits back PhilStar for 'scolding' write up: "Allow me to publicly apologize to the President for my absence in Isabela." - The Daily Sentry

Saturday, November 3, 2018

DA Secretary hits back PhilStar for 'scolding' write up: "Allow me to publicly apologize to the President for my absence in Isabela."

DA Secretary voice out his reply to Philippine Star's write up on Duterte's remark on his absence at Typhoon Rosita aftermath in Isabela. Image credit to Facebook/PhilStar
Department of Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol is once again another victim of biased media when the local newspaper Philippine Star published a headline about him on November 3 entitled "Duterte scolds ‘no-show’ Agriculture Sec. Emmanuel Piñol".

Piñol on his Facebook, posted urgently his official statement on Philippine Star's 'scolding story'.

Philippine Star write up

Dated November 3, Philippine Star emphasized on their article published that President Rodrigo Duterte was looking for Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol on his conference with cabinet members to attend to the damage of typhoon Rosita aftermath in Cauayan, Isabela.

“I think somebody has to call the attention of Manny,” President Duterte said, referring to Piñol by his nickname, after a briefing by other Cabinet officials at a hastily called command conference in Cauayan, Isabela on Thursday.

“So sige man siya yabang na marami siyang pera (he keeps boasting that he has a lot of money). Now is the time for him to spend all of it,” Duterte said.

Philippine Star also mentioned to the said news write up that Piñol was also nowhere to be found when Duterte visited Isabela province in the aftermath of Typhoon Ompong last September.

Duterte mad at Piñol

As written in the report of Philippine Star, it was really pretty obvious that the writer put emphasis on Duterte being mad to Piñol.

As written in PhilStar report says, "Duterte noticed Piñol’s absence after other Cabinet secretaries – including Mark Villar of public works, Francisco Duque III of health, Silvestre Bello III of labor, Eduardo Año of the interior and Rolando Bautista of social welfare – finished briefing the President."

"The President said he wanted the DA secretary to be on top of the situation in the agriculture and fishing sectors, and that the official should be ready to provide livelihood opportunities for displaced farmers and fishermen."

"With Piñol a no-show, Duterte asked other agriculture officials to relay his message to the agriculture chief."

“Sino ang taga-ano dito, taga Agriculture? You might want to make a report. I’ll ask Manny to come in kasi pati ‘yung fish cages doon sa dagat kanya ‘yun eh. It’s part of the agricultural thrust, kanya ’yon pati isda,” the Chief Executive said.

In reply to Philippine Star offensive write up against DA Secretary Manny Piñol, he posted in his Facebook an explanation why he failed to appear in the cabinet meeting and instead sends his undersecretary Director Narciso Edillo to attend to a family tradition  of spending All Souls and All Saints Day with his loved ones. According to Piñol he never misses visiting the graves of his parents and relatives who perished in the Air Philippines crash of 2000 in Samal Island in Davao  del Norte. He even expressed his public apology to President Duterte for his absence in Isabela.

President Duterte on Thursday, November 1 flew to Davao City to visit his parents resting place after he led the post-disaster briefing in typhoon-hit Isabela.

Manny's reply

In Secretary Manny Piñol's post, he said that the money that President Duterte was pertaining to was the funds of the Department of Agriculture (DA) which is ready for disbursement in instances like this.

Aside from saying in the news article that President Duterte was anguish of Piñol's absence in the meeting, the DA secretary also hit back PhilStar there was photos in his social media account and if you also google it he is absolutely present in the Typhoon "Ompong".

DA Secretary Manny Piñol with President Duterte at typhoon "Ompong aftermath. Image credit to Facebook

DA Secretary Manny Piñol with cabinet members at typhoon "Ompong aftermath. Image credit to Facebook

Read full post below:



The Philippine Star went to town with a banner story that I was 'scolded' by Pres. Rody Duterte because I was a "No Show" in a post-Typhoon Rosita briefing in Isabela on Nov. 2.
The story made it appear that I ignored the advisory received by my staff on Nov. 1 to proceed to Isabela for the Presidential visit.
The Phil. Star article also insinuated that my "no show" was a sign of disrespect to the President.
The report also put malice on the statement of the President where he said "marami naman siyang pera, ubusin nya na ng gastos dito," making it sound like it was my personal money.
The President, of course, was referring to the Department of Agriculture (DA) funds which I announced in previous engagements are ready for disbursement in instances like this.
When the Phil. Star said that my absence in the Isabela trip was a "No Show," nothing could be farther from the truth.
When I received the advisory that the President would visit the typhoon affected areas, my staff informed the Office of the Presidential Protocol that I would not be able to make it because of the traditional family obligation of visiting, offering flowers and lighting candles in the graves of our departed relatives, including my father.
The Office of the Presidential Protocol was informed that I would be represented by DA Director Narciso Edillo who will provide the briefing.
This is not the first time that a Cabinet Secretary who could not make it to a Presidential engagement was represented by an official of his Department.
The Philippine Star also suggested that I was also absent during the Presidential Visits in the aftermath of Typhoon "Ompong."
This is highly inaccurate as I was with the President in Cagayan Valley, Ilocos and Benguet, although I missed the Isabela trip where I was represented by an Undersecretary.
Although this is no justification for officials like me who are sworn to serve, I begged off from the Isabela visit because of a revered family tradition of spending All Souls and All Saints Day with our loved ones.
I have never missed visiting the graves of my father and relatives on this occasion, a tradition which I am passing on to my children and grandchildren.
In fact, in this last visit to the graves, I brought along with me my only grandchild, Duane, 4, who intently listened as I explained how my father died and how three family members perished in the Air Philippines crash of 2000 in Samal Island in Davao del Norte.
I know the President will understand.
I take the blame and apologize if the Office of the Presidential Protocol failed to inform him of my request that I be represented by another official in that trip.
Director Edillo, who represented me in the briefing said, the President looked for me but there was no "scolding" as the Philippine Star reported.
Allow me to publicly apologize to the President for my absence in Isabela.
Personally, I interpret the President's act of looking for the Agriculture Secretary in the briefing as an indication of the importance he gives to the welfare of farmers and fishermen affected by the Typhoon.
Tomorrow, I will proceed to Isabela to meet with poultry raisers whose buildings were damaged by the typhoon to help them market their chicken and provide support so they could recover.
I will also work on the Presidential directives issued during his latest visit to Isabela.
Thank you.
(These were the photos I took during the Presidential visit to Laoag, Ilocos Norte and Cagayan Valley in the aftermath of Typhoon Ompong.)"

President Duterte during a situation meeting with cabinet members and Ilocos Norte Governor Imee Marcos during the aftermath of Typhoon Ompong in Laoag, Ilocos Norte. Image credit to Facebook/Manny Piñol

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