A number of friends and critics in social media have been asking me why the Left is silent on the allegations of corruption against Vice President Jejomar Binay. Why are there no rallies denouncing him, no effigies being burned, no statements of condemnation? Why, they ask, are we quick to condemn Pres. Aquino on the pork barrel and DAP corruption cases but hesitant to do the same with the VP?
Just for the record, the Left, in particular the umbrella group Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN), had already issued a statement on the issue (see link here). The gist of the statement is that while clearly politically motivated, the charges against Binay are serious and most likely true given the systemic corruption of the entire bureaucracy. Thus Binay should stop evading and address the issues fully and squarely.
To quote the Bayan statement:
“The corruption charges and ensuing Senate investigation against Vice President Binay are clearly politically motivated. He nonetheless owes it to the people to fully respond to the grave charges hurled against him on his central role in what is being exposed as the systemic plunder of the coffers of Makati City.
“The allegations are scandalous even as they are not unusual. We know the corrupt system of bureaucrat capitalism pervades the entire government. It is no secret that overpricing, kickbacks and rigged biddings in government projects are the rule rather than the exception in practically all national agencies and local government units, and are even euphemistically or cryptically called ‘SOP’.”
In the same statement, however, Bayan also pointed out the Aquino administration’s double standard:
“…it is clearly hypocritical for President Aquino to unleash his attack dogs against VP Binay and other leaders of the opposition while shielding himself and his allies from similar demands and mechanisms for accountability.”
Just like most Filipinos, we in the Left find Binay’s explanations on the charges sorely lacking. Giving one-sided interviews to the media is certainly not enough to dispel the serious charges and mounting evidence against him. His refusal to appear before the Senate is his own undoing. Attempts to belittle the charges and dismiss them as pamumulitika strengthens the perception that he is evading the issue and hiding something.
Everyone know that In this country, you don’t get to build a political dynasty in the richest city and become the second highest official of the land by playing it straight. I’m sure the VP has lots of skeletons in his closet and if anyone has proof that he’s a crook, by all means they should go ahead and bring it in the open and file all the cases that can be filed in court.
In this regard, the public is already getting more than it can ever ask for. Just imagine, the entire government anti-corruption machinery – from the Ombudsman, the Sandiganbayan, the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), the Commission on Audit (COA), Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee – is hot on Binay’s trail. Even the Department of Agrarian Reform has entered the picture, and rightly so. Of course the media is dutifully lapping it all up with spins in all directions.
I have no doubt that once Senators Trillanes, Cayetano and Pimentel get their smoking gun, they will proceed to impeach Binay. Mabilis pa sa alas kwatro. And we all know why – because if they don’t bring him down, he’s going to be the next frigging president of the Philippines. Paano na lang si Mar?
In fact, there are concerns that the Senate is overstepping its powers and losing its integrity by conducting an inquisition on Binay. But who cares? Congressional investigations have always been a way for extracting political muck, except that Trillanes and Cayetano lack finesse.
In any case, Mar and his yellow chuwari-wari-waps already have Sonny, Allan and Koko to do the dirty work. They certainly don’t need the Left’s help on this. Besides, we have better things to do than play the Nog-Nog vs. Maligno charade.
At this point, I think the Left is better off spending its time and energy pursuing a host of other anomalies that Malacañang and its allies want swept under the rug – the illegal and immoral PDAF and DAP disbursements, the Malampaya Fund scam, the MRT-3 fiasco and the LRT-1 privatization contract, to name a few. Lahat ng sangkot, dapat managot! Plus of course the various national and sectoral advocacies that we have to push.
Make no mistake, activists and their organizations are eagerly awaiting the developments on the Binay issue and will make appropriate responses as needed. As the leading presidential candidate for 2016, Binay’s track record should be subject to full public scrutiny. The people have a right to know whether he and his family plundered the coffers of Makati or not and to demand accountability for any and all wrongdoings.
But we are also keenly aware of the motivations of both sides and are careful not to fall into either of their self-serving political agendas.
For now, we can only hope that all those who have access to evidence and information – whether friends or enemies of Binay – will come out to help establish the facts even as we urge the authorities to go beyond narrow political considerations in order for truth and justice to prevail.#