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Challenge accepted! Harry Roque agrees to take on Ayalas, MVP

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Former Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque is back to working for the government.

Related story: Harry Roque to handle case vs water concessionaires, Duterte hints

Roque on Sunday (January 19) announced that he has accepted President Rodrigo Duterte’s offer to handle the government’s case against Maynilad and Manila Water.

“Yes Mr. President, I accept the challenge. Will sue the Oligarchs!” he tweeted.

Related story: Challenge accepted! Roque to sue oligarchs

The tweet was accompanied by a blurry selfie he snapped with Duterte.

The President in a speech Thursday (January 16) dropped Roque’s name as one of the abogados who will handle the government’s cases against the two water concessionaires.

He made the remark as he maintained that the government would not heed the ruling of a Singapore-based arbitral court ordering the government to pay Maynilad and Manila Water nearly P11 billion for the losses they incurred due to their denied request for a rate hike.

“There’s no f*cking payment coming their way. And so I began to scrutinize the contract. And Harry is here, he will be one of the lawyers who’d they’d be facing– maybe in court,” Duterte said in a speech during the 120th anniversary celebration of Baptist Churches in the Philippines.

Manila Water is owned by the Ayalas while Maynilad is jointly owned by DMCI Holdings Inc and Metro Pacific Investments Corp headed by businessman Manny Pangilinan.

Duterte had threatened to file fraud charges against the two water concessionaires over the supposed onerous provisions in their contract with the government.

He also ordered the cancellation of Maynilad and Manila Water’s concession agreement until 2037.

Roque has been rarely seen in public since he withdrew his senatorial bid in February last year for health reasons.

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