Binay on political dynasty: Why ban qualified people from gov’t post?
CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines—Vice President Jejomar Binay and Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago traded barbs on the need to implement an anti-political dynasty law in Congress.
During the presidential debate by the Commission on Elections here on Sunday, Binay said he does not find a need to prevent political clans from running for elective positions as long as they are elected in honest and clean elections.
“Kailangan maging maliwanag ano ba talaga ang dynasty. Bagamat nandyan sa Saligang Batas, hindi magkasundo kung ano ang definition ng dynasty. Bakit naman magkakaroon ng batas na pagbawalan ang gustong magtrabaho, qualified naman at nahalal naman sa isang malinis na halalan?” Binay said.
(The definition of the dynasty should be clear. Although it is in the Constitution, it has not agreed upon yet what the definition of the dynasty is. Why would there be a law preventing those who want to serve (the country), are qualified and elected in honest elections.)
Furthermore, Binay also cited a few elective positions in Manila which were not won by the children of politicians.
Asked to rebut, Santiago said the constitutional provision on an anti-dynasty law must be upheld and that an implementing law fails to be passed in Congress because its members are mostly from political clans.
“The anti-dynasty provision is found most of all in our Constitution and it is a basic principle. In constitutional law, everything that is written in Constitution more or less should be literally applied,” Santiago said.
“Sinasabi ang members ng Congress, malabong (mapasa), pero ang totoo dyan self-interested sila. Gusto nila dynasty dahil mga dynasty ang pinanggagalingan at pupuntahan nila,” Santiago said.
(Members of the Congress say it is unlikely that such law will be passed but the truth is they are self-interested. They want dynasty (to remain) because they came from and are heading to these dynasties.)
“Kung ayaw nila (If they are against it), we have to amend the Constitution. But while it is there, it must be obeyed. The Constitution is always and always supreme,” she added.
Binay is also starting a political dynasty in Makati—he was Makati mayor from 1986 to 1998 and 2001 to 2010 until he was elected vice president. His wife Dr. Elenita Binay served as Makati mayor from 1998 to 2001.
His son Junjun was mayor in 2010 until he was dismissed from public service for serious dishonesty and grave misconduct over allegations of rigging the procurement process of the allegedly overpriced Makati car park building.
Binay’s daughters Abi is a Makati representative while Nancy is a senator.
Binay rebutted Santiago’s position by turning the tables on the senator—Binay said Santiago’s son was a party-list representative.
Miriam’s son Narciso Santiago III served as representative of the Alliance for Rural Concerns party-list from 2007 to 2010.
“Si Miriam, mayroon po siyang anak na nahalal. Kung isyu ng dynasty, ganun ang problema natin eh. Tama si Miriam, mayroon sa Constitution, pero ang problema walang implementation ng batas, kaya tayo nagkakagulo pa,” Binay said.
(Miriam has a son who was elected. The dynasty issue is our problem. Miriam is right, it is stated in the Constitution, but the problem is there is no implementation of the law, that’s why we are in disorder.)
Santiago glared at Binay when he said she has a relative in Congress. Santiago corrected Binay and said his son only run for one term and did not continue to run for office.
“Mali ang sinabi (What he (Binay) said is wrong). Ang anak ko tumakbo na (My son ran for) party-list representative after one term, he did not serve for another post,” Santiago said.
She said she has no relatives in any elective positions now. RAM
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