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Jun 26th
Dear Romy, Please allow me to make s PDF Print E-mail
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Saturday, 22 August 2009 17:22
Dear Romy, Please allow me to make some corrections on your latest BREAKING NEWS: 1) The Title Itself ("Greg Macabenta Admits He Made Money from Wells Fargo Bank While Sitting as a Ranking NaFFAA Official") was wrong Greg DID NOT make money from Wells Fargo Bank while sitting as a ranking NaFFAA Official, and he has never received a single cent from Wells Fargo for or on behalf of Naffaa. He had professional dealings with Wells Fargo Bank as associate agency of Dae Advertising, in connection with a marketing campaign that his ad agency, Minority Media Services, created for them. This was in 1995 – well before the founding of NaFFAA. The campaign, incidentally, won the 1996 Gold Effie for the Most Effective Non-English campaign in the US. Before that, he also dealt indirectly with Wells Fargo when he created the “Gintong Kasaysayan” campaign for the bank, which won the Best TV and Best Print trophies in the awards presentation of the Asian American Advertising & PR Alliance. 2) "Nobody in NaFFAA has raised the possibility of a conflict of interest between MMSI, through Macabenta, contracting private jobs with Wells Fargo Bank while he was discharging his role as one of the ranking NaFFAA officers" There was NO CONFLICT OF INTEREST,as his two private contracts with Wells Fargo Bank were made way before his involvement with NaFFAA (please see my explanation above) 3) "I have never received a single cent from Wells Fargo for or on behalf of NaFFAA," he declared in an email to Dr Joy Bruce, a former NaFFAA official in Florida, who circulated the email contents to a list of recipients that included the Philippine Village Voice. I don't remember circulating my response to Greg's email to Philippine Village Voice. It must have been forwarded to you by one of the few people who received that private email -- and I don't know if it was sent to you as a full message or in bits and pieces (which could account for the misinterpretation) 4) "Last Wednesday (Aug. 12), it was a doubtful Dr. Bruce who asked Macabenta: "I need to know if NaFFAA really got money from Wells Fargo, and if so, when was it given, how much did Wells Fargo give, who got that money for NaFFAA and did anybody get paid commission?" I never really doubted Greg, because I didn't see his name in the records that I had. I only said it because I wanted to investigate further and confirm the information that I had on hand first, before issuing any public statement. Otherwise, I would be engaging in irresponsible journalism. It is easy to mislead people if bits and pieces of "evidence" are presented in the wrong context. 5) I do however appreciate your publishing the statement of Tim Hanlon, President of Wells Fargo Foundation, who confirmed: a) That Wells Fargo Bank gave NaFFAA $100,000 for its annual conference in 2002, and another $200,000 was given by Wells Fargo Foundation to support NaFFAA's general operating fund; b) That the monies were paid upon the request of NaFFAA co-founder Alex Esclamado to whom the two checks were directly sent; c) That neither grant was made for specific projects that required quantifiable results so that financial reporting or accountability to the bank wasn't necessary d) That neither grant request mentioned any solicitor e) That he didn't know Greg until he was queried about the latter's role in the money grant. These basically confirm Greg's innocence beyond any reasonable doubt, and negates all allegations or insinuations by you or Bobby, with respect to Greg's involvement in the $300,000 Wells Fargo grants. I really believe that you would lose credibility if you continue to force this issue, directly or tangentially. I think it is time to end this discussion, and let the public know the real truth. There are other more important community issues, such as the 2010 Census, that you can write about. Thanks, and take care Joy

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