By Keith Brendan Zamora


President Rodrigo Duterte has defended Michael Yang, who is allegedly involved in the overpricing of face masks and face shields that were procured by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM).

In his taped address on Tuesday, Duterte insisted that Yang was not an accomplice in the said allegation because he was just a Davao-based Chinese businessman.

"Michael Yang has been in business for 20 years, he started in Davao. Hindi iyan ang Instik na [kinukunan] ko ng pera (I don't get money from him)," he said.

Yang reportedly connected to Pharmally Pharmaceutical Corporation, a local company that made P8.68 Billion from the sale of COVID-19 supply at the start of the pandemic in 2020.

Sen. Richard Gordon showed RTVM footage of Yang introducing the President to Pharmally officials during a Senate hearing last week. 

Gordon, according to Duterte, suffers from Sinophobia — an anti-Chinese attitude, 'since he is American.'

"Akala ko ba (I thought) we are inviting investors? That's why I went to China several times — to ask them to help us," he pointed out.

Duterte also slammed allegations that Yang was linked to alleged drug syndicates.

"I am a friend of China. It will tell me the truth. They cannot enter here if they are into drugs," he added in Filipino language.

Report source: GMA News