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Duterte orders DOJ to review controversial lease contract of Nayong Pilipino Foundation

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By Genalyn Kabiling

President Duterte has ordered the Department of Justice (DOJ) to review the controversial lease agreement forged by Nayong Pilipino Foundation with a casino resort developer.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque speaks during a press briefing at the New Executive Building in Malacanang, Friday. (CAMILLE ANTE / MANILA BULLETIN)

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque (CAMILLE ANTE / MANILA BULLETIN)

Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque said the President believes the lease contract was flawed since it was awarded without proper public bidding.

The contract, which allowed a long-term lease of a government property with low rental payment, was also disadvantageous to the government, Roque added.

“Sinabi po ni Presidente na pina-review niya po iyong kontratang iyan kay Secretary Menardo Guevarra ng DOJ at sa tingin po ng Presidente, ang tawag po niya sa kontratang iyan ay flawed [The President said he asked Secretary Menardo Guevarra to review the contract and the President thinks the contract was flawed],” Roque said in a radio interview.

“Dahil flawed, dapat hindi matuloy iyang kontratang iyan {Because it is flawed, the contract should not push through,” Roque said.

“Naniniwala siya na talagang grossly disadvantageous to government po itong kontratang ito at hindi talagang pupuwedeng hindi ma-sanction legally, dahil nga sa kawalan ng bidding [He believes the contract was really grossly disadvantageous to government and should must sanctioned legally due to lack of bidding],” he said.

The President has sacked all the board and management officials of Nayong Pilipino Foundation over the alleged irregular terms of the contract with Landing Resorts Philippines Development Corp. (LRPDC), including a “ridiculous” lease for 70 years.

The dismissal of the Nayong Pilipino officials was announced by Roque in a Palace press briefing last Tuesday just as they were attending the groundbreaking ceremony of the proposed entertainment and leisure complex in Paranaque City.

“Nakikita natin na maraming beses na nagmumura ang Presidente, pero itong pagkakataon po talaga, nakita ko talaga na parang fire breathing dragon itong si Presidente, galit na galit po siya dito sa nangyari dito sa Nayong Pilipino [We have seen the President cursed so many times but in this case, I saw the President was like a fire-breathing dragon. He was really angry with what happened Nayong Pilipino],” he said.

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