Vice President Jejomar Binay has taken exception to the questions he was asked during the first leg of the PiliPinas Debates 2016, the first presidential debate in 24 years.
Apparently expecting that the first round of the debates will center on a candidate's experience in government—something he has a lot of after being mayor of Makati City in almost two decades—Binay was disappointed that he was asked about properties in his Statements of Assets, Liabilities, and Net Worth.
He was also disappointed by a question on political dynasties.
"Umpisa pa lang ang sabi, ang paguusapan natin, kung inyong natatandaan, ung mga nanood ha, unang paguusapan natin, track record. Track record e di kung ano ang nagawa," Binay said in a campaign speech in Tanauan, Batangas on Wednesday.
"Aba, ang tinanong naman sakin ay lupa kong namana at ung lupa kong nabili. Yung aking si Miriam na ka-partner, tinanong ng dynasty. E wala naman hong track record na tinanong ha," he added.
Binay said the debate format needed some tweaking.
"Kung hindi, sayang lang ho. Sayang ung pinakapakay kung bakit nagkakaroon ng paghaharap sa taumbayan," Binay said.
Binay said there was too little time to put a presidential candidate's message across.
"Hindi ho naman debate e. Hindi ka naman makasagot doon sa napakalayo sayo. Pangalawa e mas mahaba pa ho ang commercial kaysa ho malaman kung ano ang dapat malaman sa kandidato," Binay said.
"Yung pagharap ninyo sa television e dapat e masuri, marinig kung ano ang paninindigan at ano ang pinaniniwalaan ng kandidato at kung bakit siya ay dapat iboto. E pagkakahaba-haba naman ng commercial," he added.
Binay said he would ask the Commission on Elections to shoulder the cost of airing the debates.
"Ang aking gagawin, susulat ho ako sa Comelec, pwede ba ikaw na lang ang gumastos doon? Kasi ang naunang interes, yung kikitain sa pagpapalabas, dadami mag-i-sponsor. Kulang na kulang naman ho sa oras na matugunan ang mga dapat maharap ng mga kakandidato," Binay said.
GMA Network statement
Meanwhile, GMA Network issued a brief statement on the matter on Thursday morning, maintaining that Binay's camp, as well as the teams of the other presidential aspirants, was informed ahead of time of the subjects to be discussed during the first leg of the presidential debates on Feb. 21.
GMA Network said: "We respect his opinion about the Presidential Debate on Feb. 21, 2016 but GMA wishes to clarify that it was made clear to the Binay team and the other presidential candidates' teams what subjects would be discussed during the debate."
The network stressed, however, that specific questions were not shared with the candidates.
"GMA confirms that none of the candidates were informed of the specific questions asked during the Debate," the network added. —NB/JST/RSJ, GMA News