Beleaguered diplomat in viral video back in Manila

by Maria Aleta Nieva Nishimori,

Posted at Apr 30 2013 03:08 PM | Updated as of Apr 30 2013 11:30 PM

MANILA – Philippine Consul General to Vancouver Jose Ampeso is now in Manila to face a fact-finding panel from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and explain his display of rude behavior during a consular outreach mission in Alberta, Canada.

“He is now home and we are going to conduct an investigation,” said Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario on ANC's Headstart, Tuesday.

The incident, which was caught on video, shows Ampeso lashing out at Prospero Flordeliz who was renewing his passport in Red Deer, Alberta on April 19.

The video uploaded on YouTube went viral.

“I think the behavior was uncalled for and as I’ve indicated, we demand a higher standard of conduct from our people and there should be nothing less,” stressed del Rosario.

The DFA secretary explained that the case will be referred to a board that would conduct a formal probe if the preliminary investigation would indicate that there’s probable cause to pursue the matter further.

“In our manual, there are categories for penalties depending on the seriousness of the violations or the offense that will be determined by the board and they will make a recommendation to me and I will take a good look,” del Rosario said.

According to DFA spokesperson, Assistant Secretary Raul Hernandez, the Secretary has also ordered the Philippine Consulate in Ottawa to go to Vancouver and gather more information on the complaint.

The beleaguered diplomat is also scheduled to retire this year.

When asked if an early retirement is an option, del Rosario said, “That could be an option. We’ll have to see.”

Ampeso apologized for the incident, but cried foul against malicious attacks against him on the net. He insisted that he was not arrogant, rude and drunk as Flordeliz claimed.

He added that he was tired after attending to passport applications. He also felt insulted by Flordeliz' one dollar donation to the Philippine National Red Cross. - With report from ANC