No more comment from Palace on MRT 'extort try'

Posted at 04/03/14 4:03 PM

MANILA - Malacanang wants to move on from the allegations of extortion in the purchase of additional train coaches for the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) system.

Czech Ambassador to the Philippines Josef Rychtar broke his silence anew, claiming influential people are trying to protect MRT general manager Al Vitangcol.

Vitangcol supposedly attempted to extort $30 million from a Czech firm for a contract for new coaches.

Sought for comment, Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said: "The DOTC [Department of Transport and Communications] has already commented through its spokesperson, and there is no need for us to comment further at this point."

Vitangcol went on leave when news of the allegations of extortion first broke. He has since come back to work.

The DOTC eventually awarded the P3.8-billion contract for 48 new MRT coaches to CNR Dalian Locomotive & Rolling Stock Co. of China.