TUGUEGARAO CITY, Philippines- Cagayan Governor Manuel Mamba denied he had any hand in the infamous “white papers” linking his rival Congressman Randy Ting and his family to contractors allegedly involved with illegal drugs.
Mamba told Forum at the capitol here on Tuesday, March 13, the Tings should instead disprove the allegations and that he merely was furnished a copy of the letter.
The letter penned anonymously was addressed to the president and was circulated in a management committee meeting of Mamba’s department heads on November 2017.
“It’s up for them to disprove it, that’s not my allegation. That’s the allegation of the letter,” Mamba said.
The governor responded to Board Member Maila Ting-Que who issued a challenge to Mamba to resign from government service, along with his clan’s politicians, if the governor fails to prove the Tings’ “ties’”with alleged local drug lords.
Further, he said it was “unfair” to point him as the one behind the letter, even betting his life over any connection with the letter.
“Ibig niyang sabihin ako yung palalabasin niyang gumawa doon. Mamatay na ako…Sana magsalita ang Diyos kung sino ang nagsisinungaling sa amin ni Maila at sa mga Tings,” Mamba said.
“It’s so unfair na palabasin mo na ako. Kahit na kanino. Sabi ko nga itataya ko pati buhay [ko] kung may kinalaman ako sa letter na ‘yon,” he added.
Meanwhile, Mamba said he shared the copy to other department heads in the meeting to ask “what to do” with the allegations.
“I was furnished a copy but I have to discuss it here dahil yung sinasabi nila na mga tao dun ay nakipagparticipate sa bidding naming dito sa bidding namin. Eh ayaw kong mabahiran kami ng drugs-drugs dito. Baka sabihin pa ng president na mga contractor ko ay mga drug lord. So I have to discuss it with my management committee members,” Mamba explained.
Yet, the governor said he “honestly” believed most of the things written in the “white papers” are true.
“If you analyze the letter, hindi mo malalaman na meron palang hotel yung mga Islabon doon. Pati yung pera na involved yung PCL [Philippine Councilor’s League]. Pag kinonnect-connect mo kasi yun dahil andami naman nating sources of information, there is truth to the allegations,” Mamba said.
Mamba was also referring to another allegation that Ting-Que allegedly paid thousands of money to Cagayan councilors in exchange for votes for PCL chairmanship. Ting-Que is incumbent PCL-Cagayan President, making her ex-officio member of the provincial board.
“Kasi yung letter na ‘yon. Pati yung pinakamaliit alam niya. Ibig sabihin kasama nila [yung nagsulat]. May falling out lang sila,” he added.
Meanwhile, Ting-Que and his brother Congressman Randy Ting had earlier denied the allegations, swearing they have never been and will never be involved with drugs.
The board member also accused Mamba of irresponsibly sharing “lies” to destroy their family’s reputation, saying Mamba should have verified first the information he received.
This issue reignited just a day before President Rodrigo Duterte, known for his stringent war on drugs, visits Cagayan province to witness the destruction of alleged contraband cars in Santa Ana town.
Ting-Que also challenged Mamba for a confrontation in front of Duterte during the president’s visit. Northernforum.net