THE camp of Vice President Jejomar C. Binay derided Malacañang for raising “petty” issues such as the use by the Office of the Vice President (OVP) of the Coconut Palace.
Joey Salgado, spokesman of the vice president, said the OVP leases the Coconut Palace because it is still owned by the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS).
“The Office of the Vice President is a mere tenant. In fact, since 2010, the GSIS has increased the rent from P400,000 a month to P440,000 a month,” Salgado said in a statement.
“The OVP used to occupy not even one floor of the Philippine National Bank (PNB) building in Pasay City. It paid almost P1 million in rent. The Vice President is grateful to the President for allowing him to use the Coconut Palace even as a tenant. But it seems that the Palace is now doing an accounting of the supposed favors extended by the President to the Vice President, treating public funds as personal monies given to officials and agencies who, in turn, are expected to be eternally grateful,” he added.
Salgado stressed that Binay “did not beg for supposed favors or alms” from Aquino.
“He simply wanted an office for the Vice President befitting the second highest official of the land. Future Vice Presidents can now look forward to having such an address,” he said.
Salgado said instead of raising such petty issues, the Palace should focus on serious problems such as poverty.