MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang on Monday chided and asked Vice President Ma. Leonor “Leni” Robredo to stop speculating about the government’s supposed special treatment of Chinese nationals.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo and Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddyboy Locsin Jr. appealed to the public not to “blow up this issue” after last week’s confrontation between a police officer and a Chinese national.
On Saturday, Jiale Zhang, a 23-year-old fashion design student, threw a cup” taho” at Police Officer 1 William Cristobal at the MRT-3’s Boni Station in Mandaluyong City after she was told that beverages and other liquid items are prohibited in the station for security reasons.
Robredo said that the incident was not only an insult to persons in authority but to the Filipino people as well.
She called the incident a “wake-up call” to the “special treatment” accorded to Chinese nationals in the Philippines, amid the steady rise in the number of Chinese nationals working in the country.
Sought for reaction, Panelo chided Robredo for her comment.
“Maybe it’s a wake up call for her to stop speculating and stop giving statements that may inflame incidents that need not be so,” he said in a Palace briefing.
“That particular issue happens almost anywhere. Let us not blow up the issue. Moreover, she has been charged, one. Number 2, I think they are considering her deportation,” he added.
The Palace officials believed the incident was isolated.
“I have not heard of any other incidents, I mean publicly. But there have been rudeness in certain nationalities, it’s not limited to Chinese. Koreans do that also, Japanese,” he said.
He, however, warned “foreign nationals who sojourn in this country should always behave, otherwise they are subject to deportation.”
“We will not allow them to disrespect authorities or violate any law or ordinance in this country,” he said.
Asked about the President’s reaction on the incident, he said, “The President is outraged by any kind of oppression,” he said. / gsg
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