Missing Binay aide still on Makati gov’t payroll
Vice President Jejomar Binay’s longtime secretary Eduviges “Ebeng” Baloloy continues to draw her salary from the Makati City government despite disappearing six months ago, the Inquirer has learned.
The Inquirer also learned that Baloloy “retired” sometime during her disappearance and received from the city government a check covering her retirement benefits on Monday, two days before Mayor Junjun Binay stepped down to obey a suspension order from the Ombudsman.
Baloloy and another trusted aide of Vice President Binay, Gerardo “Gerry” Limlingan, disappeared last year after the Senate opened an investigation into allegations of corruption in Makati during Binay’s term as mayor of the city.
The Senate blue ribbon committee has ordered Baloloy and Limlingan, together with 12 other people, arrested for ignoring summons to appear at the hearings that looked into charges of overpricing in the construction of Makati City Hall Building II and other alleged corrupt deals involving the Vice President.
An Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) report released by the Court of Appeals in May showed that Baloloy and Limlingan had billions of pesos in individual and joint bank accounts, among 242 bank accounts belonging to Binay and his family that the court ordered frozen on suspicion that the deposits came from illegal activities.
Limlingan is said to be a successful businessman, but there are no records that show Baloloy has businesses of her own.
Her gross monthly salary from the Makati city government is P60,000.
Binay’s camp claims that the Vice President has not seen Baloloy and Limlingan for a long time, and last week Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV reported that the two had left the country.
The Bureau of Immigration, however, said it had no records showing that Baloloy and Limlingan were no longer in the country.
Information obtained by the Inquirer from a Makati City Hall source showed that the immigration bureau was right, at least in the case of Baloloy.
Paid in cash
The source told the Inquirer that City Hall continued to pay Baloloy’s salary in cash although she was supposed to have disappeared six months ago.
The source said the Makati city government paid its employees’ salaries manually and in cash.
“The records show that her salary was received every payday and her retirement benefits, including terminal leaves and other benefits, were given to her and received [two days] before Mayor Junjun stepped down,” the source said.
Sought for comment, Joey Salgado, spokesperson for the Vice President, confirmed that Baloloy had applied for retirement.
“Yes, I was told she applied for early retirement,” Salgado said in a text message.
As for the report that Baloloy continued to be paid despite disappearing, Salgado said it should be verified whether she had already claimed her leave credits.
“That should explain her salaries,” Salgado said.
Like Limlingan, Baloloy cannot be found. Her last known address was Arellano Street, West Rembo Village, in Makati.
Baloloy had been the Vice President’s personal secretary since 1986 when President Corazon Aquino appointed him officer in charge of Makati after the Edsa People Power Revolution.
Former Makati Vice Mayor Ernesto Mercado named Baloloy during a Senate hearing one of the people to whom he delivered millions of pesos in kickbacks for Binay when the Vice President was still mayor of Makati.
Mercado said Baloloy was one of two people to whom the Vice President entrusted his share in the kickbacks from various infrastructure projects in Makati City.
The other person was Limlingan, Binay’s longtime financial adviser.
According to the AMLC report to the Court of Appeals, Baloloy and Limlingan began to empty their bank accounts after a Senate blue ribbon subcommittee opened hearings on the corruption charges against Binay in August last year.
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