Alice Guo calls for fair probe in plea to Malacañang

Alice Guo calls for fair probe in plea to Malacañang
In this Facebook post on May 31, 2024 shows Mayor Alice Guo meeting senior citizens of Bamban, Tarlac.
Facebook / Mayor Alice Leal Guo

MANILA, Philippines — Suspended Bamban Mayor Alice Guo on Tuesday sought to dispel all accusations against her in a letter sent to Malacañang, where her camp said her name had been "dragged unfairly" amid speculations of her ties to illicit activities by Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGO).

In a six-page letter addressed to Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin, the mayor's camp requested a thorough and impartial probe into the accusations against her.

Bersamin chairs the same anti-crime body that is set to file human trafficking charges against Guo. 

Guo denied all accusations against her related to human trafficking, kidnapping and money laundering, according to a copy of the letter provided to reporters. 

"Ang aking mabuting reputasyon at character, pati na rin ang pagsunod sa mga regulasyon tulad ng ARTA, ay patunay ng aking integridad," Guo said.

(My good reputation and character, as well as my adherence to regulations such as ARTA, are proof of my integrity.)

"Anumang pagkukulang ay dulot ng kawalan ng kaalaman kaysa sinasadyang pagkakasala, at wala akong direktang pakikilahok sa anumang ilegal na gawain na kaugnay ng mga paratang na ibinibintang sa akin," the mayor added.

(Any shortcomings are due to a lack of knowledge rather than intentional wrongdoing, and I have no direct involvement in any illegal activities related to the accusations against me.)

Guo denied claims she is using her position to protect the POGO hub recently raided in Bamban. She also said that she has no direct participation in the everyday operations of gaming operators. 

“Ang mga organisadong krimen tulad ng money laundering, human trafficking, kidnapping at illegal POGO operations ay karaniwang naisasagawa nang patago ng mga malalaking grupong may sariling agenda,” Guo said.

(Organized crimes such as money laundering, human trafficking, kidnapping, and illegal POGO operations are typically carried out secretly by large groups with their own agendas.)
“Ang pagsasakdal sa isang mayor ng pagkakasangkot sa mga ganitong klase ng aktibidad nang walang sapat na ebidensya ay hindi makatarungan at nakasisira sa integridad ng opisina, at ng reputasyon ng indibidwal at ng institusyong kanyang pinaglilingkuran,” she added.

(Charging a mayor with involvement in such activities without sufficient evidence is unjust and damages the integrity of the office, as well as the reputation of the individual and the institution they serve.)

The embattled mayor is also the former president and 50% owner of Baofu Land Development Inc., the company leasing the property where the facility of the POGO hub is located.

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