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Sueno denies corruption charges by 3 subordinates

Interior and Local Government Secretary Ismael D. Sueno has denied the corruption allegations hurled against him by Department of Interior and Local Government Undersecretaries John Castriciones, Jesus Hinlo, and Emily Padilla.

The three DILG officials have accused Sueno of allegedly collecting grease money from illegal gambling operators through his grandson, reportedly a police official.

Sueno admitted having received but rejected offers to protect illegal gambling syndicates in exchange for payola.

“May grupong nag-insist na tanggapin ko ang pera sa butas, iyung payola galing sa illegal gambling. Sila mismo ang nag-contact sa gambling lords na sa payola. E hindi ko tinanggap,’’ Sueno said.

Sueno said his grandson occupies a high position in Camp Crame in Quezon City as a police officer but insisted that he carries no influence over him.

He also denied claims that he owns a hotel in Marbel, South Cotabato. According to him, the property belongs to his businessman brother. “Ang kapatid ko is siguro 20 times richer than I am… Hindi ko kayang magpatayo ng ganoong kalaki,” he added.

Sueno also denied claims that he went to Austria with his family to purchase allegedly overpriced firetrucks, explaining the purchase of the firetrucks was a government-to-government deal approved during the previous administration.

Sueno maintained that he was in Austria to follow up on the delivery of the second batch of 76 firetrucks.

The three DILG Undersecretaries have reportedly asked President Duterte to replace Sueno for corruption.

But Sueno turned the tables on his accusers, accusing them of probably being involved in corrupt practices and wanting to have control over him. (Chito A. Chavez)