MANILA, Philippines – The Boy Scouts of the Philippines on Friday, January 23, denied the claims of its former senior vice president that Vice President Jejomar Binay had shortchanged the organization in a land deal with developer Alphaland.
In a statement released through the Office of the Vice President, current BSP Senior Vice President and Acting Secretary General Wendel Avisado said there was nothing shady about the deal, contrary to the allegation of former Makati vice mayor Ernesto Mercado.
“The BSP is not aware of any transaction with Alphaland outside of the joint venture agreement that Mr. Mercado has signed… and the subsequent amendment and joint venture agreement and deed of sale that were signed by the succeeding officers of the BSP,” said Avisado.
Binay, is in the midst of the biggest corruption scandal to hit him to date, has been the national president of the BSP for over two decades.
During a Senate Blue Ribbon subcommittee hearing on Thursday, January 22, Mercado claimed Binay had pocketed close to P200 million in a deal with Alphaland for a BSP property in Makati city.
Mercado, a former BSP officer, also said the BSP had yet to receive some P600 million in a deal to develop the land.
In response to the allegations, Avisado said, “Mr Mercado’s claim that Vice President Binay received about P200 million from the transaction with Alphaland Makati Place Corporation is pure hearsay unless he can prove it with competent evidence."
Binay, through his spokesmen, has also denied Mercado’s claims and challenged his former ally to come forward with real evidence.
Why just now?
Avisado also questioned Mercado’s timing, labelling it as “tainted with politics.”
“If he is truly working for the welfare and interest of the BSP, and if there were indeed irregularities involved, then why did it take him close to 7 years before divulging it to the public?” he said in the statement.
“The BSP believes that all these are tainted with politics and the BSP will not allow politics to destroy it,” Avisado added.
It was the BSP National Council, and not Binay alone, who authorized the deal with Alphaland, said Avisado.
“He is aware that the agreement was thoroughly discussed and approved by the BSP National Executive Board (NEB), the intention being to make the property earn money for the BSP,” he said.
The BSP official also said they “welcomed” the subpoena the subcommittee is set to issue against BSP officials.
“[The BSP] has nothing to hide and it is also confident that in the end the truth will come out,” Avisado added. – Rappler.com