Army lot given to Makati gov’t went to Binay dummies - Mercado | Inquirer News

Army lot given to Makati gov’t went to Binay dummies – Mercado

By: - Reporter / @MAgerINQ
/ 06:48 PM July 07, 2015

WHAT was originally envisioned as a community complex in Makati City ended up in the hands of alleged dummies of Vice President Jejomar Binay, former Makati City Vice Mayor Ernesto Mercado said on Tuesday.

But Mercado said Binay was the real owner of the 8,877 square-meter lot that was given by the Philippine Army to the Makati City government. Binay was the city mayor when the property was supposedly transferred to the local government.

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Senator Antonio Trillanes IV, who initiated the Senate probe against Binay, pegged the market value of the property at around P1 billion.

“On paper po, ang lumalabas na may-ari ng lupa si Erlinda Chong pero yun pong sa katotohanan ang may ari ngayon ay si Mr. Limlingan at Marguerite Lichnok kung lupa lang ang pag-uusapan,” Mercado said, responding to Trillanes’ queries.

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Limlingan was the alleged dummy of Binay. He was also tagged as the Vice President’s dummy in a property in Batangas.

“So si Mr. Limlingan as a dummy of the Vice president? So ang may ari…?” Trillanes asked to which Mercado answered: “Si Vice President.”

Mercado made it clear though that the Chong family’s investments in the property were legitimate.

“Kung yung buong property including improvement magkakaroon ng value na let’s say P1.5 billion, ang kalahati naman noon ay tunay ng pera ng mga Chong,” he said.

Chong’s son, Kimsfer, who was present at the hearing, said the property belonged to his mother.

“Yung property po named after my mom, sa kanya talaga yun at kung ano po yung shares ni Mr. Limlingan at Lichnok, hindi po namin alam but our shares are our shares talaga,” Kimsfer said.

He also doubts Trillanes estimate that the value of the property was now at P1 billion, saying his family bought it at P17 million in 1999.

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“Granting ang investment nyo is P17 million, let’s assume that’s only half a billion, napakswerte nyo naman. Bakit ngayon si Erlinda Chong ang nakakuha ng property na ito na binigay ng Philippine Army sa gobyerno ng Makati? Bakit napunta sa inyo?” the senator asked.

“Alam ko kung bakit, dahil kayo po ang dummy ni Vice President Binay,” Trillanes added.

But Kimsfer immediately denied the senator’s claim.

“Hindi po, sir, hindi po your, honor,” he said.

Mercado said the property was part of the 5.5 hectares lot of the headquarters of the Philippine Army’s 525th engineering battalion being headed then retired general Alexander Corales.

As head of the survey team, he said he was instructed by then Mayor Binay to survey the Fort Bonifacio for the local government’s plan to build a barangay or community complex where a barangay hall, health center, fire department and other local establishments would be set up soon.

“Kaya lang paglipas ng ilang taon, siguro nakita ni Vice President Binay na napakaganda ng future ng lote na yun, nawala na po kami dun sa intention na yun ay ide-develop bilang isang magandang community complex…,” he said.

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TAGS: Jejomar Binay, Nation, News, Philippine corruption
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