THE camp of Vice President Jejomar Binay on Thursday described as baseless the allegations of former Makati Vice Mayor Ernesto Mercado that Binay received kickbacks when he was the mayor of Makati City.
“Like the former general services head Mario Hechanova, Mercado conveniently used the name of a dead person to make malicious and baseless allegations against the Vice President and his family. They should stop using the name of a dead person, in the process hurting his family who are still grieving from his death a year ago,” Cavite Gov. Jonvic Remulla, Binay’s spokesperson for political affairs, said in a statement.
He was referring to former city engineer Nelson Morales, who was killed in Legazpi City, Albay.
Mercado said Binay and Morales promised him P120 million in campaign funds.
“As we have said before, such a statement not backed by evidence will not stand in a court of law but only in a kangaroo court where judgment has been rendered even before the hearing started,” Remulla said.
Sen. Nancy Binay, the Vice President’s daughter, also denied Mercado’s allegations, saying senators are allowing the Senate to be used in spreading falsehoods and lies.
“It is sad that we all have to go through these just because my father wants to continue to serve the people,” she said, referring to the Vice President’s plan to run for President in 2016.
The senator said Mercado concocted stories to destroy the good image of their family.
Also on Thursday, the blue ribbon sub-committee that is investigating the allegedly overpriced Makati City Hall Building 2 invited the Vice President to appear in the next hearing to shed light on the controversy.
The panel also summoned Makati Mayor Jejomar Erwin “Junjun” Binay, the Vice President’s son.
Members of the Senate minority refused to participate in Thursday’s hearing.
The opposition’s absence left only three of the 17-member panel to conduct the proceedings.
Earlier, Sen. Joseph Victor Ejercito declared that they will no longer attend the inquiry because their continued participation only lends credence to the process.
The senator expressed belief that the blue ribbon hearing on the controversial Makati City building is politically motivated.