Mixed Martial Arts

Medialdea, Duterte, and Cayetano: What ties bind them?

Jodesz Gavilan
Medialdea, Duterte, and Cayetano: What ties bind them?
The childhood friend of president-elect Duterte also has links to his running-mate, Senator Alan Peter Cayetano

Former undersecretary at the Office of the Presidential Adviser for Political Affairs Salvador Medialdea got another shot at a government post as he was chosen to be the next executive secretary by president-elect Rodrigo Duterte.

Known to his friends as “Bingbong”, Medialdea has been a constant on the campaign trail ever since he filed the Davao city mayor’s certificate of candidacy at the Commission on Elections (Comelec) in November 2015.

He is also a member of the transition committee formed to oversee appointees to the Duterte government.

The president-elect and Medialdea go a long way back. According to Duterte, his father and Medialdea’s father, former Associate Justice Leo D. Medialdea, worked together during the elder Duterte’s stint as provincial governor of Davao.

Cayetano and Medialdea’s ties

The incoming executive secretary, however, isn’t only connected to his childhood friend Duterte. Medialdea also has links with his running-mate, Senator Alan Peter Cayetano.

Medialdea Ata Bello Guevarra and Suarez (MABGS) Law Office was listed as a contributor in Cayetano’s 2013 Statement of Contributions and Expenditures (SOCE).  

According to the document submitted to the Comelec, the law firm which listed the incoming executive secretary as a partner donated P1 million ($21,338)* to help the reelection bid of the senator.

Medialdea also worked in a law firm established by Senator Juan Ponce Enrile and the late former senator Rene Cayetano, Alan Peter’s father. He was a partner at the Ponce Enrile Cayetano Bautista Picazo & Reyes (Pecabar) Law Office from 1983 to 1990.

He first practiced at the Angara Abello Concepcion Regala & Cruz (ACCRA) Law Offices after graduating from San Beda Law School, Duterte’s alma mater.

Required by law

Section 107 of the Omnibus Election Code (OEC) requires candidates – whether national or local – to submit their respective SOCEs. Failure to comply may result in sanctions such as perpetual disqualification from public office.

Submitting the required document allows the Comelec to track money spent on, and contributions received for, campaigns. But aside from that, in a country like the Philippines where utang na loob (debt of gratitude) is prevalent, it is in SOCEs where the people who a winning candidate may be “indebted” to become apparent.

Winning and losing candidates in the 2016 elections have until June 8 to submit their SOCE requirements. Are we going to see familiar names? – Rappler.com

*$1 = P46

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Jodesz Gavilan

Jodesz Gavilan is a writer and researcher for Rappler and its investigative arm, Newsbreak. She covers human rights and also hosts the weekly podcast Newsbreak: Beyond the Stories. She joined Rappler in 2014 after obtaining her journalism degree from the University of the Philippines.