Palace wants dialogue, not fisticuffs, on coco levy

By Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN

Posted at Feb 01 2013 03:56 PM | Updated as of Feb 01 2013 11:56 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Malacañang assured coconut farmers that the coco levy funds will not be used for political purposes but said protesters must be willing to dialogue with officials.

Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte said National Anti-Poverty Commission chair Joel Rocamora was willing to hold a dialogue with protesters that trooped to the NAPC office on Thursday.

However, she lamented that the protesters who broke into the NAPC compound and attacked police officers were not there to talk based on their actuations.

"Everything will be properly accounted for as in every centavo that this government spends," Valte said.

"Hindi [lang] naman po si Secretary Rocamora ang may kontrol doon sa coco levy funds. Marami pong miyembro ng gabinete ang nakaupo doon sa presidential task force on the coco levy funds. Pangalawa po doon, katulad po ng sinabi ni Secretary Rocamora, bukas po sila doon sa pakikipagdayalogo, pakikipag-usap po doon sa mga pumunta doon kahapon. Ngunit napaghalata naman po natin doon sa ating mga nakita na hindi naman po dayalogo ang kanilang pinunta nila doon."