Makati dads fight proxy war for Abby, Junjun Binay
The bitter rivalry of the Binay siblings for Makati’s top post in the 2019 elections has spilled over to the city council through a recent shakeup in its leadership and composition.
Councilor Maria Concepcion “Ichi” Yabut, who maintained her support for incumbent Mayor Abby Binay, was ousted as majority floor leader during last week’s session of the 17-man city council.
She was replaced by her brother-in-law, Councilor Nemesio “King” Yabut Jr., who was nominated by 12 councilors and who supported the return of Abby’s brother, Jejomar Jr., or Junjun.
King was among the 13 councilors who withdrew support for Abby, in favor of Junjun, former mayor.
The council is composed of Vice Mayor Monique Lagdameo as presiding officer, 16 elected councilors and presidents of the Liga ng mga Barangay (LnB) and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) as ex-officio members.
The 18th member, Councilor Rico J. Puno, 65, died on Oct. 30.
Changes in council positions were raised by Councilor Leonardo Magpantay in the middle of the session on Nov. 14, according to its minutes, a copy of which was obtained by Inquirer.
In a privilege speech, Magpantay read a draft resolution, signed by 12 councilors, calling for the reorganization of the council, starting with the election of a new majority floor leader.
During his speech, Magpantay said changes in the council were “an urgent matter” that affected the “integrity and reputation” of the city council.
Those who voted for the resolution were Councilors King Yabut, Magpantay, Shirley Aspillaga, Marie Alethea Casal-Uy, Grazielle Iony de Lara-Bes, Ferdinand Eusebio, Divina Jacome, Romeo Medina, Ma. Arlene Ortega, Nelson Pasia, Mary Ruth Tolentino and Evelyn Delfina Villamor.
They became the new majority, which supported the candidacy of Junjun.
Those who voted against the resolution were Councilors Virgilio “Jhong” Hilario Jr., Luis Javier Jr., LnB president Armando Padilla, SK president Rodolfo San Pedro Jr. and Ichi King.
They became the new minority, which supported the candidacy of Abby.
Before the changes, the only members of the minority were Aspillaga and Magpantay, who ran as Liberal Party members in 2016.
The other councilors ran as members of United Nationalist Alliance of the Binays.
In a previous interview, Mayor Binay said she had expected a change in the council leadership.
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