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Mayor Vico Shuts Down Illegal Chinese Restaurant, Warns Corrupt Businessmen

“They are so shameless!”
IMAGE FLICKR Jun Acullador/Artu Nepomuceno (Esquire Philippines)
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Mayor Vico Sotto has once again proven that he's not an ordinary politician—he has backbone. 

"If you want to do business in our City, YOU FOLLOW OUR LAWS," an angry Mayor Vico Sotto posted on Facebook, referring to illegal Chinese businesses operating in Pasig. 

The fearless mayor posted a Chinese restaurant Fu Yuan Ji being closed by police. It had been operating without a permit.

"It was a restaurant that was opened without any permit from the city. Ang kakapal ng mukha!” (“They are so shameless!”), said Sotto in a CNN interview.

The young mayor further warned foreigners who are planning to do business in Pasig. "Sa mga sumusubok o susubukan palang gamitin ang pangalan ko para makipag negosasyon sa mga POGO, tigilan niyo na. Wala nang maniniwala sa inyo. At sa mga empleyado ng City Hall, 1-strike policy tayo dito," said Sotto in a comment on his Facebook post.

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(“To those who will attempt to misrepresent me or use my name to do business in Pasig, stop now. Nobody will believe you anymore. And to the employees of City Hall, we are implementing one-strike policy here.”)

Sotto’s crackdown on illegal Chinese businesses comes on the heels of the “pastillas scheme,” an under-the-table deal that allows undocumented Chinese citizens to enter the country. The scheme is named such because of the grease money wrapped in white paper similar to pastillas, and allegedly handed to customs officers.

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Netizens Fear for Mayor Vico's Safety

The mayor's fearless and uncompromising approach to fighting corruption has caught the attention of many of his supporters, who couldn't help but offer pieces of advice for his safety. 

"That's a bold statement, Mayor Vico!"  read a comment on the mayor's post. 

"I pray to the gods, old and new, to protect you and your kin. Thank you for what you do. We are hopeful," said another supporter. 

Since June 2019 when the mayor took office in Pasig, he has been upending deeply entrenched corrupt practices. In his first five months as mayor of Pasig, he was able to save the city P150 million by curbing corruption at biddings

So far, Mayor Vico shows no sign of slowing down in his crackdown on corrupt practices. 

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Mario Alvaro Limos
Features Editor, Esquire Philippines
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