VIDEO: Corruption, Erap absence mar Binay’s party launch
Despite the extravaganza, cracks in the Binay camp are already showing

MANILA, Philippines – It was all pomp and circumstance at the launch of the United Nationalist Alliance as a political party, but is it all fanfare?

Ayee Macaraig reports.


It’s not a noontime show, or a singing contest.
It’s Vice President Jejomar Binay’s campaign party.
Binay launches his opposition United Nationalist Alliance in the city his family rules for over two decades.
With boxing champ Sarangani Representative Manny Pacquiao leading the group, leaders from Benguet to Marawi join Binay’s show of force of grassroots support.
It’s a program that’s part-comedy bar, part-theater – but 100% Binay style of attracting his base of ordinary voters.
But after all the song and dance numbers, it’s Binay’s tirades against the government he was part of that take center stage.

JEJOMAR BINAY, VICE PRESIDENT: Sa loob ng limang taon, napakarami pa rin ang walang trabaho, mga nagugutom, at mga maysakit na walang magamutan. JC Laganap pa rin ang kahirapan. Kaya ba ang tanong ng bayan: nasaan ang gobyerno?

Binay takes his oath as chairman of UNA, a party he says is unique for its compassion for the poor.

He promises to invest in agriculture and manufacturing and bring Makati services like quality education and health care to the rest of the country.

While some ideas may be new, many faces are not.

Allies of former President Gloria Arroyo are among Binay’s staunchest supporters.

Binay also causes a stir for a line many found ironic.

JEJOMAR BINAY, VICE PRESIDENT: Aaminin natin kapag tayo sa UNA ay nagkakamali. Hindi tayo maninisi o magbibintang sa iba. Aakuin natin ang responsibilidad at pananagutan nang buong pagpapakumbaba.

The promise contradicts the Binay’s initial defiance to a suspension order against Makati Mayor Junjun Binay over the allegedly overpriced Makati Science High School.

The UNA leader also takes a swipe at Senator Grace Poe and Interior Secretary Mar Roxas.

JEJOMAR BINAY, VICE PRESIDENT: Ang UNA ay hindi samahan ng mga palpak at manhid. Hindi ito samahan ng mga tamad, usad-pagong at teka-teka sa pagharap sa mga problema ng bayan. May sapat na karanasan at hindi bagitong mag-aaral pa lang sa pamamahala at pagsisilbi sa bayan.

Despite the extravaganza, cracks in the Binay camp are already showing.

Former President now Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada skips the event, saying he is still considering whether to support Binay or Poe, daughter of his late best friend, Fernando Poe Jr.

Like Binay, Poe has mass support but enjoys an honest and clean reputation.

AYEE MACARAIG, REPORTING: Vice President Binay promises a new, more inclusive form of governance that focuses on the poor. But he will have to reconcile this populist message with his image as a traditional politician, a man associated with patronage, dynasty and corruption.
Ayee Macaraig, Rappler.


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