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Binay's flight to Rome delayed due to hold-departure order on wife

March 18, 2013 2:01pm

Vice President Jejomar Binay walks with son Makati Mayor Junjun Binay to the departure area of the NAIA on Monday. Photo by Ariel Fernandez
 

(Updated 3:09 p.m.) Vice President Jejomar Binay's flight was delayed for about 30 minutes Monday when immigration authorities at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 1 barred his wife from leaving the country due to a pending hold-departure order (HDO) issued by the Sandiganbayan.

The vice president and his wife, Elenita Binay, were booked on a flight to Rome to attend Pope Francis's inaugural Mass in the Vatican City. President Benigno Aquino III had asked Binay to represent the government at the event.

Binay was visibly dismayed as Mrs. Binay was held by the Bureau of Immigration at the departure area of NAIA Terminal 1.

Their flight, Emirates Air EK-337 to Rome, was delayed as Binay sought permission from Justice Secretary Leila de Lima to allow his wife to leave the country.

In the end, De Lima instructed the officials to clear Mrs. Binay, whose HDO stemmed from graft cases filed in 2006 when she was Makati mayor.

In the past, Mrs. Binay would seek permission from the court to leave the country, but this time the President's instruction was sudden and they did not have time to file the request. However, Malacañang had reportedly assured the Binays that it would call the BI to allow Mrs. Binay to leave the country. Amanda Fernandez/BM, GMA News




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