Cayetano backs ‘Hugpong’ despite having bets embroiled in corruption
MANILA, Philippines — Former Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano on Thursday said he will continue supporting pro-administration political party Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP) even if some of its candidates have been allegedly involved in corruption.
“Since meron tayong coalition na pinangungunahan ng ating Pangulo at pinangungunahan ni Mayor Sara, nire-respeto ko ‘yung obligasyon na ‘yun,” Cayetano told reporters on the sidelines of the regional party’s sortie in Pateros.
Cayetano’s Tapat na Kasama teamed up with HNP during the campaign sortie in the municipality.
“Pero ‘yung obligasyon ng bawat kandidato na ‘wag magnakaw, isoli ‘yung nakaw, ‘di nagbabago ‘yun,” Cayetano also said.
Bong Revilla Jr. and Jinggoy Estrada, whose senatorial bids are being endorsed by HNP, were charged with plunder and multiple counts of graft in connection with the multi-billion pesos pork barrel scam.
Estrada was out on bail.
Revilla, on the other hand, was acquitted of plunder as the court said the prosecution failed “to establish beyond reasonable doubt” that the actor-turned-politician was liable for the crime.
However, following his acquittal, Revilla posted bail amounting to P480,000 for 16 other graft cases filed against him.
HNP likewise has endorsed the candidacy of Imee Marcos, daughter of late strongman Ferdinand E. Marcos, who was ousted via a bloodless People Power Revolution in February 1986 after years of dictatorial rule.
While Cayetano said he does not mind sharing the stage with Ms. Marcos, he said his position against the Marcoses stays.
“‘Di nagbabago ‘yun,” Cayetano said.
Cayetano ran against Imee’s brother – former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. – in the 2016 vice presidential race.
In an election debate, Cayetano questioned Bongbong for evading talks about corruption during hearings on the P10-billion pork barrel scam.
Meanwhile, Imee has been accused of allegedly misusing Ilocos Norte’s tobacco tax shares.
She is also in the middle of a controversy about whether or not she indeed earned a degree and graduated in Princeton University as well as in the University of the Philippines (UP) Diliman as she has been claiming. /kga
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