“Mamuti na mga mata niyo! Wala kaming isasauli!”
This is the strong message sent by veteran broadcaster Ben Tulfo to the Filipino people who are still waiting for him to return the controversial P60-million worth of advertisement paid by the Department of Tourism his block timer program, Kilos Pronto.
In a Facebook post last July 26, 2018, Ben Tulfo slammed those who keep insisting that they return the said amount of money even if their critics’ eyes will turn white.
“Sa mga nagsasabing isauli ang pera at hinihintay daw ang 60-M, mamuti na mga mata niyo! Wala kaming isasauli!” Tulfo wrote.
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During an episode of his program Bitag on the same day, Tulfo reiterated that all transactions in the controversial tourism ad were properly documented.
“Excuse me, tinrabaho namin iyun, may kontrata. Mayroon kaming kopya lahat, ebidensya,” Tulfo said,
“Malinis ho ang konsensya namin. Hindi ko kami nangungulimbat, hindi ho kami nagnanakaw ng pera sa gobyerno. Kung kami po ay binayaran, dahil po may serbisyong idinulot,” he added
Watch his full statement below:
It could be recalled that two months ago, the Commission on Audit has flagged down the Teo of DOT for placing a million peso worth of advertisement on his brother’s block timer program in PTV 4 citing a possible conflict of interest.
After the news broke, Teo’s lawyer Atty. Ferdinand Topacio said that the Tulfo family agreed to return the said amount of money after conducting a “family council”
“After a family council, they have decided to return the P60 million na binayad ng People’s Television Network Inc. sa Bitag Media Unlimited Inc. for the Ad placements ng DOT,” Topacio said.
“Bagama’t wala po sa kaniya (Erwin Tulfo) iyung P60 million at nagastos na po, gagawa po sila ng paraan at io-offer nila na ibalik na po up to the last centavo kung anuman po ang naibayad sa kanila,” he added.
Amidst the controversy, Teo resigned as Tourism chief in May while her husband Robert Teo also resigned as a board member of the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA).