Abby asks Junjun not to run

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Dialogue Makati Mayor Abby Binay (foreground) assures her elderly constituents that her office is always open for them. MAKATI CITY PHOTO

Makati Mayor Mar-len Abigail “Abby” Binay asked yesterday her brother, former Mayor Jejomar Erwin “Junjun” Binay, not to contest her re-election bid next year in the country’s premier business district.

The mayor confirmed in a press statement that at least two councilors, whom she had ordered investigated for allegedly maintaining ghost employees in their offices, were urging her brother to run against her.

She identified the two councilors who had broken away from her administration as Ferdinand Eusebio and Divine Jacome. She said she is endorsing the filing of corruption charges against the two before the Office of the Ombudsman.

“They are convincing Junjun to run so they can get back to power and be happy in stealing the money of the people of Makati. I still hope that Junjun will do what is best for Makati and our family and not run,” Mayor Binay said in a mix of Filipino and English.

“Ferdie Eusebio and his pals in the council are the ones betraying Makatizens. They are also the ones who destroy the name of our family. They want to bring back the ways of their syndicate. But I and my father will not allow that syndicate to return,” she stressed.

The Binay patriarch announced early this month that he is gunning for a congressional seat in Makati’s 1st District.

According to Mayor Binay, the majority councilors had been holding hostage the legislative agenda of the city government to push their political agenda.

“Due to their change of support, vital matters pending in the City Council are being used as leverage by the councilors against me,” she said. “But they should realize that what they are doing is a gross disservice to our Makatizens.”

The mayor said 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,” she said.

“I will endorse this matter to the Ombudsman for appropriate action,” she added.

In the same press statement by the mayor’s office, it was revealed that Eusebio had been accused by a major contractor of allegedly demanding kickbacks, gifts and favors during the term of former mayor Junjun.

The contractor, Armando Khong Hun, has filed a formal complaint against Eusebio before the National Bureau of Investigation for alleged violation of Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, the mayor’s statement averred.

In the case of Jacome, the mayor said several witnesses have come forward to reveal that around 20 individuals had been designated as Community Affairs Assistants II but the ATM cards of these individuals are allegedly in the possession of the councilor.

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