Gwen sides with Dino

CEBU Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia has come to the defense of Presidential Assistant for the Visayas Michael Dino on allegations of corruption in the acquisition of Covid-19 test kits for Cebu.

"Right now, I stand with Secretary Mike Dino," Garcia said on Friday, June 19, 2020.

Garcia said even though her brother, Byron, was among those who made the allegations, it does not mean that siblings think alike.

“It is possible that in one family, there can be different frames of mind. And by the way, Byron Garcia is not only the brother of Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia, he is also the first cousin of (Cebu City) Councilor Raymond Garcia,” Garcia said in a mix of Cebuano and English.

Garcia said Dino allocated testing kits for the Province, along with other important equipment.

"He gave a lot to the Province. So as far as all of these innuendos, these insinuations, all of these character assassinations are concerned, let me tell you as governor of the Province of Cebu and knowing what he has done for Cebu, I stand with Secretary Michael Dino. Let me make that very clear," Garcia said.

Garcia added Dino helped to protect Cebu's P11 billion hog industry from being affected by the African swine fever (ASF) that ravaged much of Luzon’s hog industry.

"When I was being pressured by the powers that be in Manila to lift the ban on pork, it was Secretary Mike who came to Cebu's defense," Garcia said.

For weeks, allegations on social media implied thar Dino had gained money from the purchase of Covid-19 test kits used in the tri-cities of Cebu, Mandaue and Lapu-Lapu.

Among Dino’s most vocal critics is Byron Garcia, the governor’s brother.

Dino denies any anomaly in the procurement of the test kits. (ANV)