SENATORS Antonio Trillanes 4th and Alan Peter Cayetano should file a case before the Office of the Ombudsman rather than push for a Senate inquiry into the P2.7-billion Makati City Hall 2 office and parking building, a lawmaker said on Monday
Buhay party-list Rep. Lito Atienza reminded Trillanes and Cayetano that the probe would be a waste of resources because the matter is already pending with the Ombudsman’s office.
He cautioned the two senators against using the Senate as a forum for their “presidential ambitions” in 2016.
Cayetano has been reported to be aiming for the seat to be vacated by President Benigno Aquino 3rd but Trillanes is not known to have made any announcement that he, too, is eyeing Malacañang.
“If they [Trillanes and Cayetano] really believe and have evidence, then they should file their own case to support the one in the Ombudsman and not use the Senate as a forum for their political plans,” Atienza, a former mayor of Manila, said.
Lawyer Renato Bondal earlier filed a complaint against Vice President Jejomar Binay and Makati City Mayor Jejomar Erwin Binay and other city officials over the construction of the building, alleging that it was overpriced by P2 billion.
Bondal was the lone challenger of the younger Binay in the 2013 elections.
Last week, the Senate conducted a hearing on the allegedly overpriced building to which the Vice President and the Makati City mayor were summoned.
But Atienza dismissed the Senate investigation as “pure and simple browbeating” of the elder Binay, who has been reported to be running for President in 2016.
Meanwhile, Rep. Abigail Binay of Makati accused Cayetano of picking a fight with her father to sell his own Palace bid.
“By bullying the Vice President and his family, Senator Cayetano hopes to attract a lot of attention and generate loads of free publicity for himself. This is why he is targeting us,” Rep. Binay said.
Cayetano has been courting select House members including those representing non-aligned party-list groups, to support his presidential bid this early, she alleged.
Atienza said Trillanes and Cayetano were “bashing” the Binays.
“Judging from their remarks in and out of the hearing, neither of the two senators hid their political agenda at last week’s hearing,” he added.
Atienza appealed to all lawmakers to buckle down to work, noting that Congress has little time left for urgent tasks and is even under pressure to restore public trust after the pork barrel and Disbursement Acceleration Program controversies.