MANILA, Philippines – They didn’t want to call it “sibling rivalry,” but the lukewarm relationship between the sons of former President and now Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada became evident during the campaign and has inevitably reached the Senate.
Asked by reporters on Thursday, June 6, if he will brief his half-brother, a newly elected senator, acting Senate President Jinggoy Estrada said, “I can’t give him unsolicited advice [but] I’m ready to support and guide him.”
And then he added in jest, “Baka maligaw eh (He might get lost).”
In no time, Senator-elect JV Ejercito issued a statement to address Jinggoy’s comment.
“I welcome the offer of my brother,” JV said. “His experience and advice will be of great help” to “an incoming neophyte Senator” like him.
He, however, gave Jinggoy assurances, “Hindi ako maliligaw (I will not get lost)” because “I have always adhered to the principle of putting the country above self.”
JV said it is the “simple formula” to becoming “a good public servant.”
Jinggoy is President Estrada’s son with doctor and former Sen Luisa “Loi” Estrada, while JV is the son of former actress and San Juan Mayor Guia Gomez.
The two Estrada sons will be together in the new Senate minority in the 16th Congress. Sen Estrada said he will call for a meeting of the bloc of Sen Juan Ponce Enrile after June 30, and also invite senators-elect Ejercito and Nancy Binay.
The strain on the brothers’ relationship – long the talk in political circles – became evident when JV was quoted in a news report in November 2012 that their sibling rivalry might reach the Senate.
Jinggoy reacted to this at that time: “I have never been a party to what others regard as a sibling rivalry nor considered our relationship as such. I believe that the nature of our tepid relationship is perhaps understandable considering our family’s circumstances.”
The situation was aggravated by JV’s refusal later in the senatorial campaign to shoot a political ad with Jinggoy. His older brother was offering to do it as an endorsement. – Ayee Macaraig/Rappler.com