Duterte won't reprimand PCSO's Balutan for 'lavish' Christmas party.
By Genalyn D. Kabiling
President Duterte is not about to reprimand Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) general manager Alexander Balutan for throwing an allegedly lavish Christmas party last year.
The President found nothing wrong with Balutan's recent expense as long as the pubic funds go to the intended beneficiaries, mainly the poor and the needy.
"Yung kaso niya na ano, 'yung sabihin niya na spent for millions sa...Ako wala 'yan sa akin basta ang kwarta nakaabot sa canned goods, mga sanina. Kakainin din 'yan [The case alleging he spent millions for...For me, that's nothing as long as the money goes to canned goods, clothes. You'll consume them anyway]," he said during a visit to Cebu City.
The President even thanked Balutan for the PCSO contributions to various charity projects in the country.
Balutan, a retired military general, was among the senior government officials present in the launch of a medical center in Cebu City.
Balutan recently defended his agency's decision to spend P6 million for its Christmas party last year, saying the money was not sourced from the taxpayers' money but from the gaming public. He said P2.2 million was allocated for the hotel and food and P4 million for raffle prizes and giveaways.
PCSO board member Sandra Cam has strongly criticized Balutan for the lavish party, saying the funds were better spent for typhoon victims last December.
Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) board member Sandra Cam (left); PCSO general manager Alexander Balutan (MANILA BULLETIN)