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Response to the Tourism Promotions Board’s letter to the editor

Dear Mr. Arnold T. Gonzales and Atty. Venancio C. Manuel III,

This is in reference to your letter dated March 30, 2017 which was published in the Opinion section of our esteemed newspaper on April 3, 2017.

Contrary to your allegations that “COO Montano was not personally asked on the veracity of the issues notwithstanding that he is the one being accused of these allegations,” please be informed that I have been in touch with Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) COO Cesar Montano’s executive assistant, Priza Cinco, since last December in my effort to get his statements on his appointment to the goverment agency. She had even sent me via Viber, not only his statement on his appointment to the TPB, but photos as well during his oath-taking ceremony. Since then, we’ve exchanged text and Viber messages as I’ve been following up my request for a sit-down interview with COO Montano to ask about his programs for the TPB.

Since reports had been published about the white paper alleging irregularities in COO Montano’s management of the TPB, I again messaged Ms. Cinco several times via text and Viber about getting her boss’s side. She never once favored me with any sort of reply. So perhaps you could ask her directly why she has not bothered to reply to me nor apparently informed COO Montano of my requests for his comments.

In fact, I did use the statement of COO Montano regarding the allegations leveled against, which was published on his Kuya Buboy in Action – SelPhilippines Facebook page. (See, “TPB employees hold Black Friday protest against Montano,” in the BusinessMirror, March 15, 2017.) As you can now see, I exerted all means to present COO Montano’s side to the public, despite the fact that neither his office nor the TPB had seen it fit to send said statement to our paper.

It gladdens me that “TPB management and employees fully supports (sic) the leadership of COO Cesar Montano in promoting and marketing Philippine tourism domestically and internationally as a major global tourism destination.” In this view, may I now kindly follow up my request for an interview with COO Montano with your good office so he could brief me about his plans and programs at the TPB? I may be reached at news.businessmirror@gmail.com and the cellphone number that I’ve provided Mr. Gonzales and Ms. Cinco.

MA. STELLA F. ARNALDO                                                                                         Senior Special Correspondent / Columnist

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