Binay, Roxas, Poe argue on bringing of notes at Cebu presidential debate
CEBU CITY – Vice President Jejomar Binay traded barbs with Mar Roxas and Grace Poe over whether he is allowed to use the documents he brought during the second “PiliPinas” presidential debates here on Sunday.
With all four presidential candidates standing before their respective podiums, Binay defended his stance to use the documents to disprove the corruption allegations against him, as shown on the clip aired by TV-5 which it cut from the livestream earlier.
He said the Commission on Elections (Comelec) may have disallowed it but TV-5 allowed him to bring his notes. He said Comelec does not have the sole mandate over the rules because the debate is a joint venture.
“Yung auspices, it is as if ito ay controlled by Comelec. Hindi po ito eh. This is a joint venture… Hindi ang Comelec lang ang magmamando,” Binay said.
“Ano pa ba ang deperensiya? Sila naghanda nang walang notes. Eh ako dahil naniniwala kami na pwede. Biyernes pa po ako nandito. May dala akong dokumento na gusto ko pong ipakita. Mas magiging maganda ang pagpapaliwanag ko kung mayroon akong dokumento,” Binay added.
Binay said the issue should be the time given to each candidates and not whether he should be allowed to bring his notes.
“Ano ba ho ang deperensiya . Ito na nga ba ang sinasabi ko eh… Ano ba ang deperensiya? Sila naghanda nang walang notes. Ako naghanda nang may notes. Pwede naman po tayong magtuloy. Ang importante lamang po dito sumunod kami sa time requirement. .. Yung lang naman issue dito eh. Bakit ba ho bawal ang notes? Eh hindi naman po bawal in the first place,” Binay said.
Roxas countered Binay and said the latter should comply with the Comelec prohibition on the use of notes and documents.
“Ito ang isang dahilan bakit hindi tayo umuusad bilang isang bansa, kanya-kanyang rules, kanya-kanyang interpretation,” Roxas said.
Roxas said if they are allowed to bring documents, then he should have brought the Commission on Audit report pinning down Binay for alleged overpricing of projects in Makati.
Binay retorted that Roxas is only afraid that he would show a document showing Roxas was involved in the maintenance contract mess of the Metro Rail Transit (MRT-3) when he was Transportation secretary.
“Natatakot ata na ipakita ko ang dokumento. Ikaw, si Vitangcol, tinuturo ka rin eh!” Binay said, pointing a finger at Roxas.
Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte said he would question the authenticity of the documents if Binay brings these out during the debates
For her part, Sen. Grace Poe said she does not have a problem about Binay using the documents to explain his side on the corruption allegations.
Poe remarked however that the debates reveal the candidates’ character, particularly that of Binay.
“Kaya tayo may debate, para makilala tayong mga kandidato. Ang mga kinikilos ni vice president ay pagpapakilala sa kaniyang pagturing ng isang debate…Payagan natin siya na kailangan ng ating mga kababayan ang ating posisyon. Para sa akin, ginagawa namin ang nararapat bigyan siya ng pagkakataon na mageksplika, at ang taumbayan na ang huhusga,” Poe said.
Comelec Chairman Andres Bautista made the final say that Binay would not be allowed to use the documents.
“The rules are clear from the beginning. The rule was you can have the notes during the breaks but you cannot bring to the podium. Those rules are clear in the first debate,” Bautista said.
“When the camp of Vice President Binay asked TV5, it made the wrong advice that they could, and that’s where we are,” he added.
Earlier, TV 5 news and public affairs head Luchi Cruz-Valdes apologized for telling the Binay camp that the vice president could bring the documents during the debate.
Binay countered Poe’s statement on why Binay received information that he was allowed to bring notes when the other candidates were not even told to do so.
Binay said it was Luchi Cruz-Valdes who gave him the go-signal to bring his documents and it was Valdes who also apologized for giving Binay the wrong advice.
“Babae ka, pero patapusin mo muna ako. Humingi na ng tawad si Luchi eh. Sorry sorry, kasalanan ko lahat. So sinabihan kami na pwede. So wag mo sabihin na hindi kami nakipagusap kay Luchi. Humingi siya ng dispensa sa amin,” Binay said to Poe.
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