Binay will seek presidency despite corruption scandal
CITY OF MALOLOS, Philippines – Despite the corruption allegations arising from the Senate blue ribbon committee hearings hounding him, Vice President Jejomar Binay reaffirmed his commitment to pursue the presidency in 2016.
“Walang atrasan ito. Tuloy tayo sa 2016, tuloy ang ating pagtakbo (There’s no turning back. We will seek the presidency in 2016),” he said.
On Monday, Binay continued his charm offensive in the provinces, this time going around Bulacan province, to mingle with ordinary people and local political allies.
Like in his previous sorties, Binay joined market vendors and residents in a breakfast boodle fight in Hagonoy town. He also visited the newly built Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) in Paombong town.
At lunch, Binay again joined market vendors in this Bulacan capital over a fare of adobo, grilled tilapia, red eggs, pangat na isda (fish stew), longganiza and bananas.
Binay said he wanted to visit public markets because he got to talk to “real people.”
He dismissed observations that his sorties have been political campaigns meant to prepare for 2016. He said the people or the media would be the ones to give meaning to his sorties where he said he has been bringing public service direct to the people.
“Iyan ang kagandahan ng nakaupo ka sa puwesto, nakakapagtrabaho ka at nakakadaupang palad mo ng direkta ang mga tao. Nasa inyo nang media kung ano ang iinterpret ninyo, kung kampanya ito o hindi, depende na iyan sa tumatanaw (It pays to be an incumbent official because you get to work and interact with the people. It’s up to the media to interpret that action, whether this is a campaign or not, and depending on who is observing),” he said.
Binay, who is chair of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) and the Presidential Adviser on Overseas Filipino Workers’ Concerns, said part of his visit here was to consult with Malolos Mayor Christian Natividad on the housing needs of residents and the plight of OFWs from this city.
Among the local officials who met Binay here were Hagonoy Mayor Raulito Manlapaz and San Rafael Mayor Cipriano Violago.
Binay said he visited Bulacan on his own and without the invitation of any official.
The Vice President also did not hide his disappointment with the media, who he said had treated him unfairly.
Upon seeing the Philippine Daily Inquirer in Hagonoy town, Binay said: “Sa mga balitang inilabas ninyo sa amin ni Senator [Antonio] Trillanes, sampung beses ninyo akong kinana (I had been put in a bad light in most of the news reports that you published about me and Senator Trillanes).”
He repeated this complaint in Malolos, this time directing his lament to television networks GMA and ABS-CBN.
“Ilang beses ninyo ako ininterview at nagpa-press conference ako. Sinagot ko ang lahat ng tanong ninyo, pero nababanatan pa rin ako (You interviewed me several times and I even held a press conference. I answered all your questions but still, I have been criticized repeatedly),” he said.
He said his interaction with people around the country reassured him that he still enjoyed their trust.
“Ang mga kababayan natin marunong na, alam na nila yung kasinungalingan lang. Kaya kung ganyan ang response sa atin, tulad ng ganito dito sa Bulacan, nagpapatunay iyan na hindi na sila naniniwala sa mga napabalitang mga bintang sa atin (Our people have become discerning and they know if they are being fed with lies. This kind of response and reception, like what I received in Bulacan, only showed that people do not believe the accusations of corruption thrown at me),” he told reporters here.
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