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JV Ejercito: VP Binay should answer allegations before Senate panel

Even an ally of Vice President Jejomar Binay believes he should answer the allegations of corruption being hurled against him at the Senate Blue Ribbon subcommittee.

Senator Joseph Victor Ejercito, a member of the minority bloc, said Monday he understands Binay’s apprehension due to the actuations of the senators conducting the investigation but the vice president should meet the issue head on.

“Sa akin mas maganda siguro sagutin na niya ng head on kung may chance siguro para na lang din ma-satisfy din, matapos na. Kaya lang, mahirap din, di mo rin masisisi na mag-alangang humarap ngayong umamin naman ang ibang kasama namin,” he told reporters.

“Nasa sa kanya na yun, kanyang desiyson na yun. Siguro ang worry ni VP Binay, of course, nakita niya ang conduct ng hearing ng Senate Blue Ribbon subcommittee, it has the intention and they have already said that they have to bring down the VP,” he added.

Senator Antonio Trillanes IV earlier said that he wanted to expose Binay and that he will bring out all the documents and evidence against the vice president.

Senators Grace Poe and Bam Aquino also said that Binay should face the Senate probe.

Poe promises fair investigation

Poe said the Senate hearing would be a good opportunity for the vice president to defend himself.

“I don’t think it will be difficult to defend himself in front of anybody if he is upholding the truth, if he is telling the truth. So I would encourage him but, of course, I understand the apprehension because different senators have different personalities. If he will just stick to one line — the truth — I don’t think anybody can twist it in any other way,” she told reporters.

Poe said that she will participate in the hearing if the vice president will attend.

“Yes, because I want to hear directly from him. Lahat tayo may kanya kanyang trabaho sa Senate pero sana mag-attend na siya once and for all,” she said.

She added: “I will make sure that we'll be fair about it as I’m sure fair naman ang senators in conducting the hearing.”

Poe said the Senate hearing is the venue for the people to see the truth come out.

“Remember the same venue that we used during the time of GMA (former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo). No other courts have done it particularly in the fertilizer scam. Hindi ma-investigate ng other committees but na-investigate ng Blue Ribbon committee. There is a balance in the Senate,” she said.

According to a survey conducted by the Social Weather Stations from Sept. 26 to 29, nearly four out of five Filipinos want the vice president to appear at the Senate probe on the allegations of corruption against him.

Despite this, Binay still has no plans of appearing at the investigation. — JDS, GMA News