DAVAO CITY- President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday cleared his executive assistant Bong Go on the reinstatement of Superintendent Marvin Marcos as head of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) in Region 8.
In a speech at the graduation ceremony of the Philippine National Police- Highway Patrol Group motorcycle riding course, Duterte denied that Go called Police Director General Ronald "Bato" Dela Rosa.
Duterte named Interior and Local Government Secretary Catalino Cuy instead.
"Hindi totoo iyung si Bong Go ang tumawag. May kumausap kay ano.,. Sino ba pasanginlan natin? We have to blame somebody ay si ano na lang, iyung pulis na undersecretary, si Cuy kay sige lang katawa. Si Cuy," Duterte said. "Alam mo si Chief PNP ninyo whether or not, you retain there, does not really matter. Prerogative ni Bato iyan maski sabihin criminal iyan nagpro-program pa kami dito kung totoo ba o hindi."
Go was also present at the event.
Senator Leila De Lima on Thursday claimed that Go was the "higher official" who ordered the reinstatement of Marcos.
De Lima said she has a police source who tipped her off on who ordered Marcos' reinstatement.
Go, however, denied ever meeting Marcos or even ordering his reinstatement.
In an earlier interview with ANC, Dela Rosa revealed that a "higher official" sought Marcos' reinstatement. In a later press briefing, he said the person was not at all influential.
"Hindi gaanong influential--kumpare-kumpare ko lang dyan," he said.
Marcos led the CIDG-8 team in serving the search warrant on Albuera, Leyte Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. inside the Baybay City subprovincial jail. The mayor was killed in an alleged firefight with cops.
Duterte on Friday also claimed that that Marcos has links to the illegal drug trade but Chief Supt. Asher Dolina does not.
Dolina, who served as police director for Eastern Visayas in 2015, was earlier linked to alleged drug lord Kerwin Espinosa. He has denied receiving money from the illegal drug trade.
Cuy, meanwhile, has yet to reply to ABS-CBN News' efforts to get his side regarding Duterte's statement.