SAN FRANCISCO, Agusan del Sur— “Ako si Jojo Binay, tatay ni Nancy Binay!” (I’m Jojo Binay, the father of Nancy Binay!)
With the elections just 12 days away, Vice President Jejomar Binay is working really hard to get the senatorial candidates of his United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) elected.
And that apparently includes tweaking the strategy a bit and reminding voters that the younger Binay, more than anything else, is her father’s daughter.
“Ang tatay ni Nancy ay si Jojo Binay!” he declared again at a rally attended by about 5,000 people at the municipal gym here on Wednesday.
Binay acknowledged the criticism against his daughter, particularly those that accuse her of lacking the necessary qualifications to become a senator.
He said Nancy was being attacked only because she ranked high in the voter preference surveys.
“As the saying goes, when the tree starts bearing fruit, people start throwing stones at it,” he said.
He assured the crowd that Nancy would become “just like her father when it comes to serving our country.”
“Nancy has all the necessary qualifications,” he said, citing his daugher’s experience as his assistant when he was Makati mayor and in his present post of vice president in charge of the government’s housing program.
Binay did not seem at all bothered by allegations that he was building a political dynasty in Makati—where he was mayor for almost 20 years—which he was now expanding by pushing to have a daughter elected to the Senate.
If anything, he proudly declared that his only son, Jun-Jun, was the incumbent mayor of Makati going for a second term. He said his daughter Abigail is a member of Congress representing the city’s second district.
“There are now four of us,” he said, referring to the number of Binays in elective office should Nancy succeed.
The dynastic patriarch somewhat belligerently declared that he was “ready to debate with anyone” on the issue of political dynasties.
“Why stop the will of the people when they are the ones who will elect (leaders)?” he asked in Filipino.
“To my belief, dynasty is made an issue only because of dirty politics. But in a clean and honest election, it is the right of every citizen to choose whom they want to elect,” he said.