New plunder raps filed vs Binays
New plunder and graft charges have been filed against Vice President Jejomar Binay and two of his children, suspended Makati Mayor Junjun Binay and Makati Rep. Abigail Binay, before the Office of the Ombudsman for alleged funds misuse.
Lawyer Renato Bondal, a losing Makati mayoral candidate, accused the Vice President and his son as well as five others of plunder, malversation and graft in connection with the joint venture between the University of Makati (UMak) with System Technology Inc. (STI) since 2003 to operate the university’s College of Nursing.
Bondal claimed that the arrangement allowed P547 million in tuition collected from students of the UMak College of Nursing from 2004 to 2013 to be diverted to a private corporation, Philippine Healthcare Educators Inc. (PHEI) that was formed as a result of the joint venture.
He also claimed that the College of Nursing building that the city government built at a “horrendous” cost of P1.2 billion benefited the PHEI which he said was principally controlled by STI.
The Vice President was the mayor when the joint venture was made in 2003 while his son Junjun, who became mayor in 2010, allegedly continued the venture and saw to the construction of the College of Nursing during his term.
In his complaint, Bondal also questioned the P127.85 million in professional fees that PHEI allegedly paid to STI from 2005 to 2015.
Also named as respondents were UMak president Tomas Lopez and STI executives Eusebio Tanco, Monico Jacob and Annabelle Borromeo.
Also included as a respondent was Jack Arroyo Jr. whom Bondal suspected of being Binay’s dummy as Arroyo was given a 20-percent share in the PHEI even if he was not connected with either UMak or STI.
In a separate complaint, Bondal accused Abigail Binay, and the latter’s brother, Junjun, of malversation for allegedly diverting P25 million from Abigail’s pork barrel, or Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF), allocation to two allegedly fake nongovernment organizations in 2011.
Bondal said Junjun was liable since the city government was the implementing agency for the supposed PDAF projects.
According to the complaint, the Department of Budget and Management records of PDAF releases did not include the P15 million released to the Gabay at Pag-asa ng Masa on Jan. 20, 2011, and the P10 million released to the the Kaakbay Buhay Foundation on March 29, 2011, from Representative Binay’s PDAF.
Bondal said the two recipient NGOs were “dubious and fraudulent” and belonged to “the Godofredo Roque group with similar modus operandi with that of the now infamous Napoles NGOs.”
Binay’s spokesman Joey Salgado on Tuesday branded the latest graft and plunder complaints against the Binay family as without basis and evidence.
He questioned the inclusion of Junjun Binay when the latter was not even the mayor when the joint venture between UMak and STI was firmed up.
Why not Mercado?
Salgado also questioned the exclusion of former Makati Vice Mayor Ernesto Mercado from the complainant when the latter was the one “who shepherded” the city ordinances that created the joint venture. The exclusion of Mercado from the complaint showed that this was a case of “selective justice,” he said.
Abigail Binay on Tuesday jeered at Sen. Antonio Trillanes for “letting other people do his dirty work for him.” She said she was disappointed that it was Bondal and not Trillanes who filed a case against her.
She said that all projects funded from her PDAF were supported by documents, with pictures, and with actual beneficiaries.—With Christine Avendaño, Gil Cabacungan and Dona Z. Pazzibugan
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.