Robredo shuns Coconut Palace, scouts for cheaper office space
Vice President-elect Maria Leonor “Leni” Robredo said that she finds the Coconut Palace, the current residence of outgoing Vice President Jejomar Binay, as too expensive, vowing that she will find a cheaper office space once she assumes office.
Robredo said that she is thinking if it is still logical or prudent to stay in the Coconut Palace, saying that a month’s rent costs the government P500,000.
“Iniisip natin kung logical pa ba or mas prudent pa ba na mag-opisina sa Coconut Palace. Alam ko kasi yung arkila ng Coconut Palace ay a little less than P500,000 a month. Half a million pesos din ‘yun per month. May pangalawang opisina, yung sa 7th floor ng PNB building. So pag-aaralan natin, ano ba ang mas magandang arrangement,” Robredo told reporters in a press briefing conducted after her proclamation at the House of Representatives on Monday.
If she could have her way, the outgoing Camarines Sur representative said that she would want to establish satellite offices to push her advocacy on rural development.
“Ako kasi, ang lagi kong sinasabi, ang itutulak ko ay rural development, so sana may satellite offices. So iniisip ko na mas maganda na tipirin yung operations ng central [office], pero maganda na may satellite offices,” she said.
She said that her team is already coordinating with the Office of the Vice President.
Until then, everything is still up in the air, Robredo clarified.
The Vice President-elect first shunned the prospect of living in the Coconut Palace during one of the “INQUIRER.net Q&A” sessions last April. The 51-year-old widow said that she found the place “too ostentatious.”
The Coconut Palace was built in 1978 during the term of former President Ferdinand E. Marcos, the father of her rival Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. It was commissioned by the former First Lady Imelda Marcos as a guest house for Pope St. John Paul II for his visit in the country.
The younger Marcos lost to Robredo by a slim margin of 263,473 votes. JE
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