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MANILA, Philippines – “Mayor Duterte, you’re lying again.”
Liberal Party (LP) standard-bearer Manuel Roxas II on Thursday, April 28, took a quick break from his campaign to challenge his friend turned political foe Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte to come clean over a “hidden” bank account.
This week, Senator Antonio Trillanes IV, an independent candidate for vice president, exposed what he alleged was a multimillion-peso bank account owned by Duterte and his daughter, Davao City mayoral candidate Sara Duterte.
Duterte denied Trillanes’ claim, telling media that the senator was a liar. “He fabricated it,” the mayor added.
On Thursday, journalist Ellen Tordesillas said a friend of hers went to BPI to deposit P500 in the alleged Duterte account. “It’s validated. The account is existing,” said Tordesillas in a Facebook post that has since gone viral.
“Kailan ba namin malalaman ang buong katotohanan? Kailan ba namin mapanghahawakan ang iyong sinasabi? Sabi mo kahapon, the account is non-existent,” said Roxas in a press conference in Cubao, Quezon City.
(When will we know the entire truth? When will we be able to rely on what you say? Yesterday, you said the account is non-existent.)
Roxas’ camp also deposited P500 into the supposed BPI account shortly before the press conference. The account, based on the deposit slip, belongs to a “Rodrigo Roa Duterte or Rodrigo Roa Duterte and Sara Z Duterte.”
The BPI account, Trillanes had earlier alleged, is not declared in Duterte’s Statement of Assets, Liabilities, and Net Worth (SALN). (READ: Poe to Duterte: Why blame me? Disprove bank account)
Roxas then hit the Davao mayor for his supposed hypocrisy when it came to the promise of transparency and accountability. Duterte and his running mate Senator Alan Peter Cayetano had earlier challenged other presidential and vice presidential aspirants to sign a waiver for their bank accounts in a move to “end corruption.”
Duterte and Cayetano both signed the “document.”
On Thursday, Roxas showed to media a notarized waiver that would give the Ombudsman of the Philippines access to documents concerning his own assets, liabilities, and business ties “for the duration of [his] candidacy.”
Roxas is no longer required to file a SALN since he resigned from his post as Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) chief.
The “Affidavit of Transparency” covers all of Roxas’ financial transactions and documents dating back to when he first entered government as Capiz representative in the 90s.
Trillanes is a member of the Nacionalista Party (NP), which Cayetano also belongs to. The two senators once led the year-long Senate probe into corruption allegations against now presidential candidate Vice President Jejomar Binay.
Trillanes is an independent vice presidential candidate but is supporting presidential hopeful Senator Grace Poe, who has Senator Francis Escudero as her running mate. Roxas’ running mate, meanwhile, is Camarines Sur 3rd District Representative Leni Robredo.
Roxas brushed aside possible criticism that allegations over the bank accounts are just “politicking.”
“Well, they can say what they want, pero muli, nahuli na naman ‘yung kanilang kandidato na nagsinungaling. Ilang beses sila magpipikit-mata sa kasinungalingan na lantarang ginagawa?“ said Roxas.
(Well, they can say what they want, but again, their candidate has been caught lying. How many more times will you pretend not to see such blatant lies?) – Rappler.com