MANILA — Coming from a person who used to heap praises on President Aquino’s leadership, Vice-President Jejomar Binay’s attacks against the administration is not only patently dubious but should also be dismissed as mere sourgraping, Liberal Party Secretary General and Samar Congressman Mel Senen Sarmiento said over the weekend.
Sarmiento said, Binay had no credibility to attack President Aquino’s alleged ineptness and insensibility because only a few months ago, he was one of President Aquino’s most vocal admirers.
“How can he accuse the president of being inept and insensitive when he was even bragging about President Aquino’s success in managing the country’s economy? In his keynote speech at the Philippine Capital Markets Investment Forum in May 2014, he even talked about the country’s unparalleled economic growth?” Sarmiento pointed out.
Also during the induction of the Officers and Trustees of the Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) Marriott Hotel in Cebu last year, Vice-President Binay also heaped praises on President Aquino’s leadership for bringing renewed confidence for the country as an investment site.
“How is it possible for an administration to be tagged as inept and insensitive and then credited as responsible for the country’s unparalleled economic growth by the same person? In my book, that’s just sourgraping,” Sarmiento said.
The LP stalwart said that as a former mayor of Makati and the father of a local chief executive, Binay couldn’t deny the fact that the country’s local government units (LGUs) were in a better place than before the Aquino administration.
In the Php 2.6-billion 2015 national budget, LGUs were allotted an unprecedented Php 302.3 billion, which is 37.5 percent higher than the IRA allocation in 2010. The IRA allocation increase provides LGUs more funds to support their programs and projects.
On top of the IRA, LGUs under the Aquino administration are also getting funding through the Grassroots Participatory Budgeting Process (GPBP), also known as bottom-up budgeting (BUB), which provides additional subsidy for LGUs on projects that were drawn up through participatory consultation.
According to Sarmiento, for the first time in the country’s history, LGUs are more financially liquid in funding local government projects.
“Vice-President Binay should do better than just spewing motherhood allegations. He should show us the numbers because as far as most of our people are concerned, President Aquino has not gone astray with his commitment for Daang Matuwid,” Sarmiento said.
“Vice-President Binay’s sense of judgment is clouded by his false assumption that the Aquino administration is behind his present legal woes when in fact the accusations of massive corruption that are being thrown against him and his family all came from his former political lieutenants. None of them are from the Aquino administration,” he added.
Sarmiento said that President Aquino’s high trust and satisfaction ratings based on the latest surveys conducted by Pulse Asia and the Social Weather Station (SWS) surveys were solid indications that he was doing the right thing for the country and the people contrary to Binay’s claims.