By Jel Santos
Mayor Abigail Binay on Wednesday said she will endorse to the Ombudsman the filing of appropriate charges against two Makati councilors for alleged corruption and maintaining ghost employees in their offices.
Binay said she obtained written statements from witnesses confirming the corrupt practices of at least two councilors – Ferdinand “Ferdie” Eusebio and Divine Jacome. Binay added that similar written statements are expected against other councilors.
“Corruption is behind the decision of several councilors to break away. They learned that I have received credible information on their nefarious activities, so they opted to create political drama as a smokescreen. Ginagamit nila ang mabuting pangalan ng aking ama na si (former) vice president Jojo Binay para mapagtakpan ang kanilang mga maling gawain. (They are using the good name of my father, former vice president Jojo Binay, to hide their wrongdoings),” she said.
“Natunugan nila na pinapaimbestiga ko ang mga ghost employees nila. (They learned that I ordered an investigation about their ghost employees). And now I have written statements from witnesses attesting to this. I will endorse this matter to the Ombudsman for appropriate action,” Binay revealed.
She confirmed that the two councilors, along with several others, are urging her brother, former mayor Junjun Binay, to run against her in the May 2019 elections. She expressed hope, however, that her brother will do what is best for their family and for the city.
“Binubuyo nila si Junjun na tumakbo para makabalik sila sa pwesto at magpakaligaya sa pangungurakot sa pera ng mga taga-Makati. (They are urging Junjun to run again in order for them to be in power and freely do their corrupt activities using the money of Makati residents). I still hope that Junjun will do what is best for Makati and our family and not run,” the mayor said.
“Si Ferdie Eusebio, kasama ng kanyang mga barkada sa konseho, ang nagtaksil sa Makatizens. Sila rin ang sumisira sa pangalan ng aming pamilya. (Ferdie Eusebio, along with his friends in the Council, betrayed the people of Makati. They are also the ones destroying the name of our family),” she further said.
Binay slammed the councilors by saying that they just want to return the past rotten system at the city hall.
“Hindi Serbisyong Binay ang gusto nilang ibalik. Gusto nilang ibalik ang dating kalakaran ng kanilang sindikato. Ako at ang aking ama ay hindi papayag na bumalik ang sindikato. (It is not Binay Service that you want to return. You just want to bring back the old ways of your syndicate at the city hall. My father and I will not allow the return of your syndicate),” she said.
The majority councilors have been holding the legislative agenda of the city government hostage to politics, Binay said.
“Due to their change of support, vital matters pending in the City Council are being used as leverage by the councilors against me. But they should realize that what they are doing is a gross disservice to our Makatizens. Hindi po ako ang pinapahirapan nila kundi ang mga mamamayan ng Makati. May sinumpaan silang tungkulin. Gawin nila yon at hindi ang pamumulitika (It is not I that they are giving a hard time, but the people of Makati. They took an oath. They should do it and stop politicking),” she said.
The mayor said Eusebio is the ringleader and instigator of the breakaway group. Eusebio is known as the right-hand man of former mayor Junjun Binay.
Binay said Eusebio has been accused by a major contractor of demanding kickbacks, gifts, and favors during the term of former mayor Junjun. “This includes forcing the contractor to construct a building in Makati worth P20 million for free.”
She added that the contractor, Armando Khong Hun, has filed a formal complaint against Eusebio before the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) for alleged violation of Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.
As such, she bared that Eusebio owns a stable of expensive racehorses.
“Kaya huwag nyang sabihin na iniintindi nya ang Makatizens. Ang dati nilang kalakaran at katiwalian ang gusto nilang ibalik. (That is why he should not say he is after the sake of Makati citizens. He just want to bring back their past corrupt activities),” she said.
In the case of Jacome, the mayor said several witnesses have come forward against the councilor. The witnesses said around 20 individuals were designated as Community Affairs Assistants II but the ATM cards of these individuals are in the possession of the councilor.
The mayor appealed to Makati residents with information on the corrupt activities of councilors to come out in the open and expose their wrongdoings, assuring them of her support and protection.
“Hinihikayat ko kayo na sabihin mismo sa akin ang inyong nalalaman. Sama-sama tayong nagsisikap na linisin ang Makati. Nasimulan na natin ito ngunit may iilan na gustong pumigil dito. Hindi tayo dapat pumayag at hindi tayo dapat matakot. Samahan nyo ako sa laban na ito. (I am urging those who have knowledge about their corruption activities to tell me personally. Let’s clean Makati together. W have already started it, but there are some people hindering it. We should not allow this, and we should not be afraid. Join me in the fight),” Binay ended. (