The National Parks Development Committee clarified that the viral photos of vendors seen selling Chinese flags in Luneta park were “staged”.
This incident occured on the same day of Filipino-Chinese Friendship Day celebration that was officially declared by former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo through Proclamation No. 148 series of 2002.
These arrested vendors claimed a man paid them one hundred pesos to pretend they were selling Chinese flags three days before the celebration of Philippines’ Independence Day.
“May lalaking lumapit sa amin. Ang sabi po sa akin pwede po ba kayo kunyari lang daw. Project lang daw ng anak nila. Bibigyan na lang namin kayo ng pang-meryenda tapos abot mo lang ‘to, kunyari may bibili,” said Rose Anne Bancolo, one of the Chinese flag vendors.
Luneta parks’ CCTV footage also showed three Filipinos who allegedly paid the vendors to pose as if they were buying the flags. After taking photos, the vendors said the main also took back the Chinese flags and left.
National Parks Development Committee Executive Director Penelope Belmonte already gave warnings that selling of another countries’ flag is strictly prohibited in the park.
Belmonte said she was deeply dismayed of what happened but there are no evidence that can directly linked this activity to either China or any other countries. “Please ‘wag po kayo magpapakalat ng ganyan dahil di namin to-tolerate ang ginawa niyong ito. Binatos niyo ang kapwa Pilipino niyo. Binastos niyo ang ating bansa so mahiya naman po kayo,” she said. she said. / with reports from Bombo Dennis Jamito.