March 22, 2016
MANILA, Philippines – Presidential aspirant Vice President Jejomar Binay on Monday said he respects the decision of One Cebu Party in breaking their alliance with the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA).
Binay, who is UNA’s standard-bearer, expressed optimism that the two parties will be able to resolve whatever differences have occurred.
He noted that despite the split, Rep. Gwendolyn Garcia, who is seeking reelection as congresswoman of Cebu’s third district, will remain a party member.
He added that he will continue with his plan to set up a Malacañang in Cebu and give the province priority in the allocation of infrastructure and development projects.
“We respect their decision. But let me just assure you, people of Cebu, that (I will pursue) the promises and commitments I made when I become president. Firstly, I will establish a Malacañang in Cebu,” Binay said.
“Yong mga projects to make Cebu more competitive, I’ll be supporting that. Yong dapat ibigay, kasi parang iisa lamang ang local government sa Pilipinas, ang Iloilo lang. Yong pera para sa Cebu, bahagya n’yo lang nararamdaman,” he added.
During the covenant signing between UNA and One Cebu last February, the vice president said he will give the province priority in the allocation of infrastructure and development projects.
“Under my presidency, each region and province will have funding for at least one mega project per year. And we will start here in Cebu,” he said.
Cebu’s influential Garcia clan leads One Cebu, a political party based in the province.
In a statement, One Cebu’s head Winston Garcia, who is running for governor, admitted that after thorough deliberation, the party decided to break its ties with UNA and dropped Binay as its candidate for president in the May elections.
With this break, Garcia said they are giving UNA a freehand to continue talks with their political opponents and conduct sorties around the province, without the constraints of the alliance.
Garcia noted that One Cebu entered into an alliance with UNA in the belief that it will be partnerships of equals, but what happened is the opposite.
He said “UNA treated One Cebu like imperial Manila treats the rest of the Philippines— for all intents and purposes, with absolute contempt and disrespect.”
“This is a situation that Cebu and other parts of the country had long wanted to change, but UNA did not give any indication that it is different from other parties and entities in imperial Manila,” Garcia said.
“Right from the outset, UNA regarded the alliance as nothing more than a marriage of convenience,” he added.
Garcia further noted that the party entered into an alliance with UNA out of loyalty, “but recent events showed that UNA did not appreciate nor reciprocate this loyalty.”
“Without prior notice or consultation with One Cebu, UNA has been doing sorties in various areas in the province of Cebu on its own,” he said.
“Worse, the people of UNA have been cavorting with the opponents of our local candidates, thus, sowing disunity, discord, and confusion,” he added.