Vico Sotto 'confident nothing will happen' in NBI probe


Posted at Apr 05 2020 01:38 PM | Updated as of Apr 05 2020 01:43 PM

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MANILA - Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto said Sunday he is "confident" that "nothing will happen" in the probe of the National Bureau of Investigation into his supposed violation of a ban on tricycles under the month-long Luzon lockdown.

Sotto said he has already written a response to the NBI, which alleged he may have violated provisions in the Bayanihan Act over his proposal to allow tricycles to operate in his jurisdiction despite a ban on public transportation because of the enhanced community quarantine.

Lawmakers, however, said the law was not yet even drafted at the time three-wheeled vehicles in Pasig were allowed to bring some patients to hospitals.

"Ang totoo naman ho, wala naman talaga yung kaso. The law did not exist yet. Their first letter to me, they didn’t specify. I’m confident that nothing will happen there," he told ANC.

Vice President Leni Robredo expressed support for the young mayor, saying "innovative" local governments should be recognized instead.

Among Pasig City's initiatives against COVID-19 was buying disinfection drones, turning some motels into quarantine facility and accommodation for frontline staff, providing free transportation to health workers, and setting up mobile kitchens, markets, and sanitation tents.

Senators and celebrities have also expressed their support for Sotto, with the hashtag "#ProtectVico" topping Twitter's worldwide trends hours after the NBI issued last week its invitation to the mayor for questioning.

The NBI, meantime, said the issue has been "politicized" and "sensationalized," adding that it had also invited other officials for questioning.

The lockdown, which started in Metro Manila on March 15 and expanded to cover the entire Luzon two days later, was imposed to curb the spread of the coronavirus outbreak.