MANILA, Philippines—Vice President Jejomar Binay’s formation of a senatorial slate under the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) banner shouldn’t affect the Aquino administration’s working relationship with the country’s second highest executive, Malacañang said on Saturday.
“It is a widely known fact that President Aquino and Vice President Binay belong to different political parties,” deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said in a text message to the Inquirer on Saturday afternoon.
“It should not get in the way of governance,” she added.
Valte made the remarks in response to a question on whether the Aquino administration would continue supporting Binay even when the latter’s political plans are proving to be separate from those of President Aquino’s ruling Liberal Party.
A member of the Aquino administration despite belonging to another party, Binay is the chair of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council. He is also the Presidential Adviser on Overseas Filipino Workers’ Affairs.
Apart from forming a senatorial slate, Binay has also made known his presidential ambition and is expected to run for the presidency in 2016.
Binay is the chairperson of the PDP-Laban, which has formed the UNA coalition with former President Joseph Estrada’s Puwersa ng Masang Pilipino. Binay was Estrada’s running mate when the latter ran again for president in 2010.
Estrada placed second to then Senator Aquino in the presidential race while Binay pulled a surprise come-from-behind win over Mr. Aquino’s running mate, then senator and now Transportation Secretary Manuel Roxas II.
Roxas, the president of the LP, is expected to be the party standard bearer in 2016.
Some supporters of President Aquino riled the LP when they opted to support Binay’s candidacy instead of Roxas’, coming out with the so-called Noy-Bi (Noynoy-Binay) ticket.