MANILA, Philippines - Malacañang said it will investigate allegations that former First Gentleman Mike Arroyo and former Arroyo administration officials served as protectors of jueteng.
The Palace stopped short of saying whether cases would be filed, saying that the matter would first have to be investigated.
Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda said Mayor Rodrigo Orduña will be asked to present evidence to support his allegation.
"In the natural order of things, there is an investigation going on. Syempre si Orduña will be asked to present evidence. Obviously, there is no documentary evidence here but if he has some oral evidence that can be supported then that is something that the DILG will have to investigate. Nilabas na 'yan so that is a matter for us to investigate," Lacierda said.
"We will let you know the results of the investigation. It's unfair naman for us to be preempting. Baka sabihin na naman political harassment kay former First Gentleman 'to. So we would rather let the investigation push through...," he added.
The Palace reiterated that the government will only file cases that are supported by evidence.
Orduña earlier said jueteng operators in Pangasinan allocated jueteng payola to the "3 Kings", which he identified as former first gentlemen Jose Miguel Arroyo, former Interior and Local Government Secretary Ronaldo Puno and the top official of the Philippine National Police,
The mayor said he did not personally deliver the jueteng payola to the 3. He said bagmen always collected the money from jueteng operators.