By Jefferson Antiporda Reporter
After dropping to No. 4 in the Pulse Asia survey, reelectionist Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano has apparently turned desperate in his bid to grab the top spot even at the expense of his fellow Team PNoy candidates who have consistently dominated the polls.
A well-placed source revealed that Cayetano has tapped a public relations practitioner with initials “WF” to launch a vicious black propaganda codenamed, “Oplan Destroy the Queen, Prince and Princess.”
The targets: reelectionist Sen. Loren Legarda, the topnotcher in all surveys on senatorial preferences; reelectionist Sen. Francis Escudero, also a strong contender in the senatorial race; and Grace Poe, who soared to 3rd spot in the Pulse Asia survey conducted from April 20 to 22.
Cayetano was one of the biggest losers in that survey, losing as much 8.7 points compared to a Pulse Asia survey in March.
The publicist has been given a whopping budget of P10 million per month by Cayetano to destroy the top three and boost the latter’s sagging candidacy, the source said.
The marching orders: destroy the credibility of the top 3 by whatever means possible, including a media blitz, text blast and online propaganda, to increase Cayetano’s chances of getting to the top.
Beside getting reelected, Cayetano is reportedly eyeing the presidency in 2016.
The publicist has dispatched a fake lawyer to do the media rounds, but the emissary has been rebuffed by desk editors of several big newspapers. The propagandist then turned to several newspaper columnists to attack the top three and has been selling the story to broadcasters for a handsome fee.
In 2010, the publicist with his wife, who is half his age, ran away with the media budget of then- presidential candidate Manny Villar. They made themselves scarce for most of 2011, but reemerged in 2012 during the impeachment of Chief Justice Renato Corona.
Missing antipoverty fund
The source disclosed that Cayetano is reportedly sourcing his fund from wealthy businessmen operating in Taguig City, and from his wife, Mayor Lani Cayetano of Taguig.
The first-term mayor, who is seeking reelection, is now being hounded by the Commission on Audit for failing to account for a P144.6-million fund intended to uplift the condition of poor families in the city.
COA has questioned the Taguig City government about how it spent P144.66 million in community development funds, particularly on two projects worth P76.66 million that did not meet program objectives.
“The projects/programs funded under the 20-percent development fund of the city government for the year 2011 amounting to P144.660 million were not implemented thus attainment of desirable socioeconomic developments and environmental management projects were not pursued,” COA said in its 2011 audit report.
The report said the city government headed by Mayor Cayetano is being questioned on the 144 million missing funds and it’s failure to deliver on social and environment objectives set under 2005 Joint Memorandum Circular No. 1 between the Department of Interior and Local Government and the Department of Budget and Management.