Malacañang on Wednesday used the Liberal Party’s (LP) campaign slogan in the 2010 elections as a response to Vice President Jejomar Binay’s statement that the country’s principal problem is poverty, not corruption.
“Kung walang corrupt, walang mahirap [If there’s no corruption, there’s no poverty],” quipped Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr.
The slogan was extensively used by the LP in advancing the candidacies of then-senators Benigno Aquino 3rd and his running mate Manuel Roxas 2nd who ran on an anti-corruption platform in the 2010 polls.
Aquino won the presidential race while Roxas lost to Binay.
Binay, who his time is running for President under the opposition party, is facing corruption accusations and is the subject of ongoing Senate blue ribbon investigation.
Coloma said the two problems besetting the nation–corruption and poverty– are related and should be both addressed.
“They’re linked and the two should not be separated from each other. Fighting corruption is one way to end poverty,” he told reporters in a text message in Filipino.
“The Aquino administration has established good governance on the principle that if there’s no corruption, no one wallows in poverty,” Coloma said.
During a forum with three other presidential candidates on Tuesday, Binay said his administration will fight poverty, not corruption, should he be elected President in May 2016.
He is facing plunder and graft complaints before the Ombudsman in connection with allegedly overpriced infrastructure projects in Makati City during his stint as mayor.
“The moral problem is not corruption, the moral problem is poverty. That is what I want to face, not the fight against all these allegations, but the fight to alleviate the life of every Filipino,” Binay said.
Binay’s target now a general
Senior Supt. Elmer Jamias–the ground commander of the anti-riot policemen whom the Vice President accosted at the height of a standoff in Makati City–was named chief of the Eastern Police District, earning him his first star.
Jamias, a bemedalled policeman whose life story was made into a movie that starred detained senator Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada, donned his new rank equivalent to a brigadier general in the military and took his oath in a ceremony at the national police headquarters in Camp Crame in Quezon City.
“My journey to a star-rank was never easy, but I must say, my 32 years of perseverance and hard work finally made its mark and bacame possible all because of God’s glory,” he said.
The ceremony also formalized the promotion of Director Francisco Uyami Jr. and Chief Supt. Joel Pagdilao to the next higher rank.
Pagdilao is chief of the National Capital Region (Metro Manila) Police Office, a two-star rank position which had a long list of appointees who later became chief of the Philippine National Police.
WITH NEIL ALCOBER