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(Updated 4:20 p.m.) Amid criticisms, Vice President Jejomar Binay on Monday denied using the Zamboanga crisis to begin his campaign for his 2016 presidential bid.
"Pati si [Defense] Sec. [Voltaire] Gazmin ang sinasabi nila peaceful solution hanapin. Ngayong ako ay nakapagmungkahi ng peaceful solution, pinapalabas na ako ay nangangampanya. Ano ba 'yun?" he said in an interview aired over GMA News' Unang Hirit on Monday.
"Ang mga nagsasalita ng ganyan nai-insecure sa kanilang pangarap sa pamumulitika," he added.
He issued the statement after he reported to the media last Friday that a ceasefire had been brokered with the MNLF.
However, the Zamboanga city government said police operations against the group continued before dawn Saturday and that they did not receive any ceasefire order.
Interior Sec. Mar Roxas, who is expected to face off with Binay in 2016, also said Aquino never gave a directive regarding a ceasefire.
"Dumating siya [Binay] Sabado. Nag-usap sila ng Pangulo at walang ibang utos binigay ang Pangulo kaya steady lang kami sa utos ng Pangulo," he said in a separate interview on Monday.
"May commander-in-chief po. Lalo na ngayon putukan, kung ano lang ang utos ng Pangulo, 'yun ang susundin," he added.
But Binay said President Benigno Aquino III himself authorized his negotiations with Misuari as early as Wednesday night.
"Sinabi ko na may nagparating sa akin na gusto akong kausapin ni Misuari para sa peaceful solution. Ang mga bumabatikos sa akin ayaw ata ng peaceful solution," he said.
Binay said that aside from meeting up with Misuari to "peacefully settle the problem in Zamboanga," he didn't discuss anything else with the president,
"'Eh naku baka naman ma-hostage ka,'" he quoted Aquino on GMA News TV's News To Go. "Sabi ko, 'hindi naman siguro.' Alam niyo naman si Misuari seatmate ko yan. I was one of those with Sec. [Voltaire] Gazmin who went to Jolo when we had a talk with Misuari."
Binay said he does not know why his talks with Misuari are now being denied.
"'Di ko malaman bakit tinatanggihan na sinabihan kung payag mag-ceasefire. Bagamat 'yun ang pagkakasabi nila eh ceasefire pero 'wag sila papuputukan," he said.
But the vice president said politics is definitely behind all the criticisms behind him.
"Maliwanag ang usapan namin, ceasefire yun," he said. "Napanuod ko nung nag-away si Sec. Roxas at Atty Fontanilla, may nababanggit na third party Sabi ko baka ako yung natutukoy dun, bakit di ako gumawa ng paraan."
"Ang mga magagaling na taong ito, hinahaluan ako ng pulitika," he added.
"'Yan ang epekto ng social media. Kunwari madami nagsasabi nito pero sa kanila naman nanggagaling ito. Kami naman ay 'di bagong pinanganak. 'Pag nakuha namin ang pinanggalingan, ang tanggi ganun na lang," BInay said.
Roxas, for his part, immediately distanced himself from the issue.
"Nandito tayo mula Lunes, walang tigil ang trabaho at pag-atupag sa evacuation centers. Ang Pangulo nandito. Bakit ako ang pinagsasabong eh di naman ako ang commander-in-chief?" he said.
Binay said he is no longer in contact with Misuari after he left Zamboanga but said he will still try to help however he can.
"Hindi ho ako titigil. Kung may idudulog sa akin ang pamahalaan o grupo ni Chairman Misuari [para] magkaroon ng peaceful settlement [gagawin ko] bagamat ang batikos sa 'kin wala namang factual basis," he said.
As for the suggestion to have Senator Antonio Trillanes IV to lead the talks with Misuari, he said: "Good luck."
Roxas was supposed to run for president in the 2010 elections but he gave way to then-Senator Aquino's candidacy.
Roxas then sought the vice presidency, but lost to Binay. In July 2010, he filed an electoral protest against Binay, which is still pending before the Presidential Electoral Tribunal.
After the one year ban on appointing losing candidates to a government post, Roxas was named Transportation chief.
After the death of Interior Sec. Jesse Robredo, Roxas was named as Robredo's replacement. Roxas' post at the DOTC was given to then-Cavite Rep. Joseph Emilio Abaya.
Roxas is currently on leave as the president of the Liberal Party, where Aquino is national chairman. —Kimberly Jane Tan and Roehl Niño Bautista/KG/RSJ, GMA News