UNITED Nationalist Alliance (UNA) standard-bearer Vice President Jejomar Binay on Monday said he offered concrete solutions to the people’s problems during the third and final presidential debate on Sunday, unlike his opponents who were out of touch.
“Last night, seven very real people asked us, the candidates for President, on how we can solve their very real problems. And our responses have shown that my opponents are really out of touch with our people,” according to Binay.
“To the fisherman who was being driven away by Chinese soldiers from his fishing grounds in the West Philippine Sea [South China Sea], one candidate says she will give him a radio. To the man whose father died of illness because the health center in his barangay [village]is always closed, another candidate says, ‘But we already paid out P75 billion in PhilHealth benefits. In short telling the man, Aba binigyan na kita ng pera [I already gave you money]. To the little girl whose parents could not afford to buy her school supplies, another candidate says he will kill drug pushers,” he said.
In contrast with the other candidates, the Vice President added, he has been in public service for 30 years and has fought for the poor, defended human rights and has always upheld the value of human life.
“In my 30 years in public service, I have always been on the side of the poor. I will always value the dignity of women, children and the marginalized. I continue to fight for human rights and will always uphold the value of life,” he said.
Unlike his opponents, Binay added, he offered immediate and long-term solutions to the problems raised by the seven Filipinos who questioned the candidates.
“What I did throughout the debate was to offer immediate as well as long-term solutions to the real problems brought to us by those real people, which are our problems, as a people and as a nation,” he said.
The Vice President added that he intends to replicate the programs he implemented as Makati City (Metro Manila) mayor on a national scale if he wins the presidency.
“These I intend to do, as I have done so in Makati, with compassion and competence, and always with the best interest of the people first and foremost,” Binay said.
As Makati mayor, he implemented various health and education programs, as well as services for senior citizens, that helped uplift the lives of its residents.
The city’s Yellow Card program provides beneficiaries free maternal, child and elderly care; free outpatient consultations and medicines; and government- subsidized hospitalization, on top of PhilHealth benefits.
The program has been recognized by the United Nations-Habitat as one of the world’s best practices.
Binay also implemented the BLU card program, which gives senior citizens P2,000 yearly to help defray some of their day-to-day expenses, especially on food and medicine.
Schoolchildren in Makati are also provided with free textbooks, uniforms and school supplies.