The three Tulfo brothers were the subjec of one headline after another in the past couple of weeks as they faced legal trouble and conditions stemming from their comments made across platforms, be it print, broadcast or social media.
Erwin and Ben were recently involved in a word war with a member of President Rodrigo Duterte’s Cabinet because the latter did not grant one of their requests for an interview.
The eldest Ramon is getting sued by a few politicians over his columns on a local newspaper.
As these events were ongoing, the Philippine National Police recalled their security escorts.
Erwin, the youngest of the three, berated Secretary Rolando Bautista of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) after the latter refused to grant him a phone interview for his radio show “Tutok Tulfo” on state-run Radyo Pilipinas.
On that episode, Erwin was criticizing the previous administration for not signing the Magna Carta for the Poor.
When he sought Bautista’s views about the issue, the DSWD chief’s representative asked him to send a letter of request first given that the head of the agency is busy.
The radio host took offense over the suggestion. He called Bautista, a retired military general, offensive names and slammed him as an inefficient official.
Erwin later drew flak from Bautista’s former colleagues in the military. This prompted him to issue a public apology twice.
However, Bautista stated he will only forgive Erwin if he meets a set of hefty conditions including a donation of P300,000 as a form of damages and a written apology released to the media.
Bautista’s conditions did not sit well with Ben, who moved to aid his younger brother.
Ben posted a series of strongly worded tweets against Bautista and his conditions for Erwin’s pardon.
While he did not drop any name, Ben mentioned some of Bautista’s requirements.
“Ayon sa kumag na OIC, mag-sorry daw sa lahat ng media outlet. ‘Butaw’ na P300k kinakailangan para mahugasan ang kasalanan. Tsong, daig mo pa si Padre Damaso at mga kolokoy na kauri mo! Nagpapatawa ka ba?” one of his tweets read.
As of press time, Bautista has yet to respond to Ben’s tirade.
Ramon, appointed special envoy for public diplomacy to China, is facing defamation and libel accusations from ex-Justice chief Vitaliano Aguirre and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) board member Sandra Cam, respectively, for the articles he wrote about them.
The eldest of the siblings tagged Aguirre in a supposed human trafficking syndicate at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in his two-part column last April published in the Manila Times.
“The human trafficking syndicate at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) was born during the time of Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre. Aguirre, according to my Deep Throat, was the protector of the syndicate whose godfather is Maynardo Mariñas,” read part of his article on April 11.
Aguirre’s name was mentioned in the second part of his piece titled “Living the life of the rich and famous.” The first part was published on April 9.
In the two stories, Ramon accused Cam to be a drug trafficker and the initiator of the alleged anomalies at the PCSO. — Artwork by Uela Altar-Badayos