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LP bet: Villar excluded Laurel House from SALN

April 8, 2010 9:49pm
GAPAN CITY, Nueva Ecija – Presidential candidate Sen. Manny Villar Jr. (Nacionalista Party) has excluded from his statement of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN) one of his most high-profile political acquisitions – the house of the family of the late former Vice President Salvador Laurel.

Liberal Party (LP) senatorial bet Rep. Theresia "Risa" Hontiveros-Baraquel said that although Villar announced buying the Laurel House in July 2008, it was not reflected in his and his wife Cynthia's joint SALN. Cynthia is the incumbent representative of Las Piñas City at the House of Representatives.

"May tinatago na naman si Senator Villar. Maalala natin noong 2008 binili ni Villar ang Laurel House. Pero lumalabas sa SALN ni Senator Villar, nakuha ito sa blogger ni Lila Shahani, di dineklara ang house sa SALN," Baraquel said at a press conference here.

(Villar is hiding something. In 2008 he bought the Laurel House. But based on the blog of one Lila Shahani, he did not declare it in his SALN.)

The Nacionalista Party (NP), on the other hand, defended its standard-bearer, saying in a statement that the Laurel property was owned by Crown Asia Properties Inc. and not by the Villar couple themselves.

Crown Asia Properties Inc. is one of the companies identified with Villar.

The NP branded Hontiveros' allegation as "another act of desperation" from the LP.

"We expect more of these kinds of blunders and lies as the Election Day nears. But, as we have always stated, we shall be ready to disprove any said lies and counter them with the truth," the NP said.

Baraquel said the non-inclusion of the Lauren House in Villar’s SALN was significant because the property, located in Mandaluyong City, is now the epicenter of Villar's campaign.

She added that the failure of Villar to declare the house in his SALN could be considered as an act of perjury.

Baraquel said Villar and his wife listed 38 real estate properties in his 2008 SALN, but none of them reflects the value of the Laurel property, which is estimated to be more than P100 million.

"The total book value of his real estate properties is P19 million only, and it is impossible for the Laurel property to be in his declared list. It (is) way too expensive, too ostentatious to hide," she said. - with Johanna Camille Sisante/KBK, GMANews.TV
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