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Erap celebrates 78th birthday, reveals three wishes

Manila Mayor Joseph "Erap" Ejercito Estrada, who celebrated his 78th birthday on Sunday, April 19, earlier revealed that he had three wishes he hoped would come true.

Estrada said he is hoping that the Sandiganbayan will finally grant former President and current Pampanga Representative Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's petition for house arrest. He believes that Arroyo deserves to rest as her health continues to deteriorate, and a little comfort would not be too much to ask.

Earlier this month, Arroyo, after her plea to have the case against her dismissed, asked the Sandiganbayan to allow her to be detained in her home in La Vista in Quezon City, instead of the Veterans Memorial Medical Center (VMMC) where she is currently held.

The Palace consequently turned down Estrada's first birthday wish, with Coloma explaining that the administration has no direct say on Arroyo's detention conditions.

“Mainam na ipaubaya sa hukuman ang pagpapasya hinggil dito. Tungkulin ng mga taga-usig ng pamahalaan o ng mga prosecutors ng DOJ [Department of Justice] na tukuyin ang usaping ito kung maghahain ng petisyon sa hukuman,” he said in an earlier interview.

Estrada was convicted of plunder in 2007 but was later freed after a little more than a month when Arroyo granted him executive clemency.


Maligayang Kaarawan sa aming minamahal na Pangulong Mayor Joseph Ejercito Estrada! Dalangin namin ang inyong...

Posted by Joseph Ejercito Estrada on Saturday, April 18, 2015

Aside from Arroyo's house arrest, Estrada also wishes for lasting peace and justice in Mindanao.

He said, “I wish to see a united and progressive country under one flag, one Constitution, and one democratic Republic.”

Lastly, Estrada said he wished good things for the city he leads.

“Manila is my city of birth, where my career in the movies and in politics started and prospered. I wish to see Manila regain its stature as the premiere city of the country, with disciplined residents and progressive business climate,” he said.

The incumbent Manila mayor earlier announced he will be running for reelection in 2016.

Estrada was elected mayor in 2013 after the Supreme Court ruled that he was eligible to run for public office, a ruling it upheld last month. — Bianca Rose Dabu/BM, GMA News