Vico tells Pasig vice mayor after tirade: ‘Ask through formal mechanisms, not social media’

Katrina Domingo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 25 2022 12:26 PM

MANILA - Pasig Mayor Vico Sotto on Monday urged Vice Mayor Iyo Bernardo to “ask questions through formal bodies” instead of social media.

Sotto said he did not watch Bernardo’s video statement criticizing him for allegedly hiring non-Pasig residents in key positions, and for supposedly using social media to gain attention.

“Kung may specific siyang tanong, part naman siya ng body ng ating gobyerno,” the mayor said of Bernardo on the sidelines of his first flag ceremony since recuperating from COVID-19.

(If he has specific questions, he is part of our government body.)

"Tanungin niya through the formal mechanisms, through the formal bodies. Hindi yung through media o ano, kasi sitting official siya,” Sotto told ABS-CBN News.

(He is a sitting official. So he should ask these through formal mechanisms, through formal bodies, not through the media or something.)

Sotto belied the claim that he has neither called nor texted Bernardo before publicly calling the latter out for supposedly not attending meetings.

The verbal tussle between the two began in early January when Sotto brought up Bernardo’s alleged absenteeism in a speech before city hall employees.

A week after, Bernardo hit back through a video uploaded on his social media page, saying Sotto never contacted him.

“Gusto mo ipakita ko pa yung received notice? Papel yun ha [hindi text o tawag],” Sotto said.

(Do you want me to show you the received copy of the notice? It's on paper.)

"Lahat naman nag-aattend. Imposible namang hindi [niya alam]," he said.

(Everyone has been attending, so it's impossible for him not to know.)

The mayor also urged Bernardo to name specific city hall employees who were allegedly installed in key positions despite not being a Pasig resident.

"Hindi ko naman pinanood na, pero sino ba yung tinutukoy niya? Baka naman yung mga kinonfirm niya din," he said.

(I did not watch it, but who is he referring to? It might be someone whose application he also confirmed.)

But there is nothing wrong if there are city hall employees who are not Pasig residents, the mayor said.

"Hindi po ito laro-laro. Kailangan ang mga tao natin, kung sino ang pinakakuwalipikado," he said.

(We're not playing games here. We pick people who are most qualified.)

"Lalo na sa mga high-level positions requiring expertise, ang una mo dapat na tinitingnan kuwalipikasyon... Technical expertise, local finance expert, iilan lang 'yan. Yung mga disaster risk management expert, ilan lang sila sa Pilipinas na qualified."

(You need to look at the qualifications, especially for high-level positions requiring expertise... People with technical expertise like local finance experts are very few. In the entire Philippines, there are only a few qualified to become disaster risk management experts.)

As for Bernardo's remark that he has been using social media to mask alleged inefficiencies in his administration, Sotto said: "Tao naman ang maghuhusga… Sa akin, hindi naman importante kung ano yung mga nasabi niya."

(It's the people who will judge... It's not important to me what he said.)

Sotto said he continued to work while in isolation as several documents had to be signed for several projects and disbursements to proceed.

"'Yung mga kailangan pirmahan, hindi puwede ipagpaliban yun kasi made-delay ang ibang bagay na ako lang yung authorized signatory," he said.

(Some things have to be signed and cannot be delayed because I am the lone authorized signatory.)

"Hindi ko naman maiwan sa vice mayor yung mga papel," he said.

(I cannot leave those papers with the vice mayor.)

When asked to clarify why he did not delegate his tasks to his second-in-command while he was on sick leave, Sotto said: "Bakit sa tingin ninyo? Kayo na sumagot noon."

(Why do you think? I leave it up to you to answer.)

ABS-CBN News asked for Bernardo's reaction to Sotto's latest remarks, and is awaiting his reply.

Sotto and Bernardo will be competing for Pasig's mayoralty post this May.

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