Binay reelected BSP president unopposed | Inquirer News

Binay reelected BSP president unopposed

His poll ratings may be slumping but Vice President Jejomar Binay won hands down the election for president at the Boy Scouts of the Philippines (BSP).

Binay was reelected BSP president because nobody challenged him, said BSP acting secretary general Wendell Avisado in a text message to the Inquirer on Sunday.

“[T]here was no one else who expressed a desire to run and be nominated for the position,” said Avisado, a deputy secretary general of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council, a government agency chaired by Binay.

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The Vice President is the longest-serving BSP president. Binay served as president of the BSP from 1994 to 1996, from 1998 to 2000 and again in 2001 up to the present.

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Binay’s former vice mayor in Makati City, Ernesto Mercado, said at a Senate hearing in January that Binay “maneuvered” to lift the two-year term limit of the BSP president after he reassumed the post in 2001. Mercado had served as BSP senior vice president.

Reacting to Binay’s reelection to the top BSP position, Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III said: “I hope they (BSP) know what they are doing. For the good of the children.”

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“What a waste if such hands-off attitude among BSP leaders will continue,” the senator said in a text message.

Pimentel is chair of the Senate blue ribbon subcommittee that continues to investigate corruption allegations against Binay, including reports of kickbacks he got from a land deal between the BSP and Alphaland Corp.

The BSP election took place on Saturday. Board meetings of the organization are held on Saturdays because the members are mostly volunteers, according to Avisado.

Avisado said Binay did not push for his reelection but the board made the decision that he be a candidate “because no one signified interest or intention to run as BSP president.”

“After the election, the Vice President thanked the board,” Avisado said in reply to a query on Binay’s reaction upon learning of his reelection.

Asked whether Binay’s reelection would make the organization a target of criticisms in light of the Senate probe, Avisado said the BSP National Council had explained the issues to the local council delegates during the 59th Annual National Council Meeting on May 20 to 22 in Tagum City, Davao del Norte province.

“No one stood up (during the meeting) to raise issues about the Senate investigation and questioned Vice President Binay’s continued presidency in the BSP,” he said.

Avisado said the National Council was the highest governing body of the BSP and the only body that could change the policy of electing officials of the organization and their terms of office.

Vice President Jejomar Binay: Hands-down winner  INQUIRER PHOTO

Vice President Jejomar Binay: Hands-down winner INQUIRER PHOTO

After Saturday’s election, Avisado remained BSP acting secretary general but lost his senior vice presidency position to Robert Pagdanganan, a former Bulacan governor.

It was Mercado who said at Senate hearings that Binay had allegedly pocketed close to P200 million in kickbacks from a deal between the BSP and Alphaland Corp. for the development of a 1-hectare prime property in the city.

Binay has denied any involvement in the deal to develop the property on Ayala Avenue extension and Malugay Street, where Alphaland Makati Place, a residential and leisure complex, now stands.

The BSP has not yet gotten hold of its share of the development of the complex, according to Mercado.

Pimentel said the Senate blue ribbon subcommittee would hold one more hearing on the BSP-Alphaland deal upon the request of Sen. Serge Osmeña III, who wanted to ask Alphaland president Robert Ongpin more questions.

Created in 1936 as a public corporation, the BSP is tasked with promoting “the ability of boys to do things for themselves and others, to train them in Scout craft, and to teach them patriotism, courage, self-reliance and kindred virtues.”

Its governing body consists of the National Executive Board composed of one charter member of the BSP elected by members of the National Council, the elected regional chairs of the scouts regions, the education secretary, the national president of the Girl Scouts of the Philippines, one elected senior scout each from Luzon, the Visayas and Mindanao areas; 12 elected regular members and, at least 10 but not more than 15 additional members from the private sector, who shall be elected by the board.

The members of the board then elect from among themselves a president, senior vice president, one vice president each from Luzon, the Visayas and Mindanao areas and other officers as the board may deem necessary.–With Inquirer Research

 

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