Thousands attend rally to support SAP Go

MANILA — Thousands of people trooped to the Senate on Monday morning to show support for Special Assistant to the President Christopher “Bong” Go who attended the hearing on the Philippine Navy’s Frigate Acquisition Project (FAP).

Marius Aquiles, 43, from Quezon City, officer of the Sincere Warriors of Rodrigo Duterte Advocating Federalism and President Support Movement (SWORD-AFPSM), said Go has nothing to hide and will reveal only the truth.

Hindi kami naniniwala sa binibintang sa kanya hanggang matapos ang hearing. Nandito kami para sumuporta para sa kanya (Bong Go) and to President Duterte’s administration (We do not believe the allegations against him, so we will stay here until the hearing ends to support him and the administration of President Duterte),” he told the Philippine News Agency (PNA).

Liz Lorenza, 57, a member of a transport group in Cavite echoed the sentiment.

Pumunta kami dito ng sarili namin para maipakita ang suporta kay Presidente Duterte (We came here to show our support for President Duterte),” she said.

Supporters, who were mostly clad in red, blue and green and holding placards expressing support for Go, claimed to have come from different parts of the country such as the National Capital Region (NCR), Dasmariñas in Cavite, Tarlac and Bulacan.

Go, meanwhile, was overwhelmed as he thanked the people who expressed support not only for him but for the President as well.

Sobrang daming nagmamahal sa ating Pangulo. Alam ko nandito kayo dahil naniniwala kayo kay Pangulo, Mayor Duterte. Lalabas po ang totoo ngayon araw na ito sasabihin ko lahat. Wala naman talaga akong alam dito (So many people love our President. I know you are all here because you believe in the President, Mayor Duterte. The truth will surface today and I will tell everything. I do not know anything about it),” he said.

Go has been accused of having intervened in the FAP contract worth PHP18 billion, including its weapon systems and munitions. He earlier denied the allegation, saying he was unfairly dragged into the mess.

Malacanang and Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana have also cleared Go of the accusations, reiterating that allegations hurled against him are “untrue and unfounded”.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque has said that the project was completed during the term of then president Benigno Aquino III and was just signed on Oct. 24, 2016 during the Duterte administration.

“It was the Aquino administration which chose Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) as supplier of the two frigates, including the supply of the boat, the navigation, the communications, and the combat management system,” Roque said.

“It was also during the previous administration that Hyundai was declared the responsive bidder and awarded the two frigates, including the CMS,” he added.