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MANILA, Philippines – Reacting to alleged vote-buying in Makati City, mayoral bet Junjun Binay told voters to accept the money, but still vote for him and the rest of his Team Be Nice slate.
“Ang alam ko ang mga taga-Makati, sa lahat ng elekyson na dinaanan ko, matatalino po ang mga botante po dito. Ano po ang ginagawa ang mga botante? Kukunin lamang ang pera, ilalagay sa bulsa, pero si Jun Binay at Team Be Nice pa rin ang iboboto sa balota,” said Junjun during his miting de avance on Saturday, May 11.
(I know the people of Makati, in all elections I participated in, and the voters here are smart. What do voters here do? You accept the money, put it in your pocket, but you will still vote for Jun Binay and Team Be Nice in the ballot.)
“Sana po maging matahimik po ang halalan po natin. ‘Yan po ang pangarap ko pagdating po ng Lunes,” he added. (I hope our elections will be peaceful. That is my dream on Monday.)
Prior to saying this, Junjun said his camp has received reports of alleged vote-buying in Makati, where he is challenging the reelection bid of his older sister Abby Binay.
“Nababalitaan ko na po na kaliwa’t kanan na ang bigayan ng pera nangyayari. May P2,500, may P1,500, may P5,000. May nababalitaan ako may nakatanggap na ng P9,000. Totoo ba ‘yan? Naririnig ‘nyo ho ba ‘yan?” Junjun asked the crowd, who loudly said yes.
(I have heard reports that bribery is happening left and right. They give P2,500, P1,500, and P5,000. I even heard of some people receiving P9,000. Is that true? Did you hear about this too?)
Junjun, however, did not mention any specific candidate whom he believes is behind the supposed bribe.
Apart from the warring Binay siblings, other candidates for Makati mayor are Ricardo Yabut (Bigkis Pinoy), Carmelle Alanzalon (independent), and Renato Bondal (independent), who had made corruption allegations against Junjun and his father, former vice president turned Makati congressional candidate Jejomar Binay.
Junjun’s words on Saturday night mirrored the same statement made by the family patriarch during the elder Binay’s failed presidential bid in 2016. (READ: Junjun Binay: I fought for my dad, I will fight for Makati)
During the tail-end of the campaign 3 years ago, Binay said in several sorties that voters should take politicians’ money, but still vote for the people they want, like him and this then-running mate and now Senator Gringo Honasan.
The Binay family fielded Abby for mayor in 2016 after Junjun was dismissed from office in September 2015.
The Ombudsman had found Junjun and other city officials guilty of the administrative charges of serious dishonesty and grave misconduct over alleged irregularities in the construction of the Makati City Hall Parking Building. But the Court of Appeals already overturned this ruling in May 2018.
Junjun and his father, also a longtime Makati mayor, are set to face trial before the anti-graft court Sandiganbayan over the allegedly overpriced Makati Science High School building. – Rappler.com