LAST week, The Manila Times Desk sent me a copy of a letter sent by the law firm representing Lyka — the Suarez Odonio Law Offices — calling my attention to the article I wrote regarding drug smuggling suspect Bernard Lu Chong, who I mentioned in the article as being the owner of Lyka Philippines.

In the spirit of fair play, I am giving my column space to Lyka and publishing in whole the letter sent by its lawyer.

Below is the letter signed by lawyer Jenara Odonio in its entirety (except for attachments):

xxx

Formal demand to cease and desist

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Sir:

We write to you on behalf of LYKA digital app.

In the article entitled "The need to pursue the war on drugs," by Charlie V. Manalo in his column "The Naked Thought," published on Aug. 6, 2022, Mr. Bernard Lu Chong was referred to as the owner of a digital app LYKA and that he is the owner of Lyka Philippines. To quote the exact paragraph of the article:

"Charged for the illegal drug smuggling attempt was the owner of the digital app Lyka, Bernard Lu Chong, a Filipino businessman behind the controversial media platform Lyka Philippines and Filipino shoe brand World Balance." (source: http://www.manila.net/2022/08/06/opinion/columns/the-need-to-pursue-the-war-on-drugs/1853561)

Mr. Bernard Lu Chong is not the owner of LYKA. For your reference, LYKA is owned by Things I Like Company Limited registered in Hong Kong. Majority of the shares of Things I Like Company Limited is owned by Blue Rock Capital Limited, also a company. (See attached documents.)

On behalf of LYKA, this letter serves as a formal demand that the abovementioned article written by Charlie V. Manalo be corrected to remove the description that Mr. Bernard Lu Chong is the owner of LYKA. It is further demanded that Manila Times cease and desist from writing or publishing any articles or columns in all your platforms that describes Mr. Bernard Lu Chong as the owner of LYKA or any association thereof. Failure to comply within five (5) days from receipt of this letter will compel LYKA to explore the possibilities of filing charges against Manila Times for the damage that the abovementioned article or future articles of the same tenor will cause to LYKA.

We look forward to a more responsible and accurate journalism from Manila Times.

For LYKA

Atty. Jenara G. Odonio

xxx

Here is the link to the episode of the "Wowowin" TV program which was my basis for mentioning that Mr. Bernard Lu Chong was the owner of Lyka Philippines:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?app=desktop&v=U78l4hh7IYM

In that particular episode of "Wowowin," host Willie Revillame introduced Mr. Lu Chong as the owner of Lyka Philippines. Mr. Lu Chong did nothing to deny that he was the owner of Lyka as claimed by Revillame, he even took the opportunity to explain how the Lyka app works.

I also counter-checked with other sites to validate Revillame's claim when I wrote my article, and these are what I got from the net:

https://bilyonaryo.com/2022/08/02/nbi-hunts-down-bren-chong-court-orders-arrest-of-world-balance-lyka-app-owner-for-drug-smuggling/

https://bilyonaryo.com/2022/08/02/updated-nbi-hunts-down-bren-chong-court-orders-arrest-of-lyka-app-owner-for-alleged-drug-smuggling/

https://www.abante.com.ph/anak-ng-world-balance-owner-tinutugis-sa-drug-smuggling/