MANILA — Makati Mayor Jejomar Erwin S. Binay on Wednesday vowed to exhaust all legal remedies to stop the enforcement of six-month suspension order against him and 22 others by the Office of Ombudsman.
The Office of the Ombudsman slapped a six-month suspension order in connection with the alleged overpricing in the construction of the Makati City Hall Building II.
“I will exhaust all available remedies. I will continue discharging my duties as mayor until all legal remedies have been respected. While I may belong to the opposition, I am still entitled to my rights like any Filipino citizen,” Binay said during the press conference held at Makati City Hall.
The mayor also appealed for fair and equal treatment from the concerned government agencies.
Binay said that the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), led by Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas II, was the implementing agency of the suspension order.
He said he was hopeful that the courts would remain fair and impartial, even if the Ombudsman had not done so.
Atty. Claro Certeza, Binay’s lawyer, said among the reliefs they were asking the court included the issuance of a temporary restraining order.
“We believe that until such time that our prayer for TRO is decided upon, hindi po nila puweding alisin si mayor (they cannot get rid of the mayor),” he said.
Asked what they will do in case the DILG implements the order, he said they would just inform the agency that there was a pending petition and a prayer for TRO.
The mayor warned the citizens of Makati that the lies and unjust persecution against his father, Vice President Jejomar C. Binay, and their family will not stop, and are expected to even intensify in the coming months as the 2016 election draws near.
The mayor appealed for sobriety among residents, and expressed confidence in their continued support to his family.
For his part, Roxas said has not received yet the copy of the Ombudsman order.
“Hindi ko pa nakikita o nababasa ang order. Ganun pa man, sa lahat ng bagay gagawin namin ang aming trabaho tulad ng pagpapatupad ng orders mula sa legal authorities tulad ng RTC, Sandigan, CA, Ombudsman, Comelec at iba pa. Kailangan natin lahat respetuhin ang batas at mga ka-utusang legal,” Roxas said in a text message sent to Philippines News Agency (PNA).
(I haven’t seen or read the order. Be that as it may, in everything, we do our job like carrying out orders from legal authorities like RTC, Sandiganbayan, CA, Ombudsman, Comelec and others. We need to respect the law and legal orders.)
Meanwhile, about a thousand people, including city hall employees, flocked to the Makati City Hall to show their support for the Binay family.
The suspension stems from the plunder and graft complaint filed in July last year by lawyer Renato Bondal, a political rival of the Binays.
In his complaint, Bondal claimed the construction of the building was overpriced by Php 862 million.
Bondal said VP Binay, who was Makati mayor when the building was constructed in 2007, conspired with his son, Junjun, then a city councilor, some former and current Makati officials, and 10 executives of Hilmarc’s Construction Corp. over the building’s construction.