Trillanes: VP Binay earned P2B in kickbacks from service deals

Vice President Jejomar Binay speaks to senior citizens in Amapola St., Barangay Pembo, Makati, Thursday. The city government of Makati has been under public scrutiny amid new allegations of having "ghost" senior citizens who reportedly receive benefits. (MNS photo)

Vice President Jejomar Binay speaks to senior citizens in Amapola St., Barangay Pembo, Makati, Thursday. The city government of Makati has been under public scrutiny amid new allegations of having “ghost” senior citizens who reportedly receive benefits. (MNS photo)

MANILA  (Mabuhay) –Vice President Jejomar Binay pocketed some P2 billion from the salaries of alleged ghost personnel in Makati City and contracts entered into by firms owned by his supposed dummies, Senator Antonio Trillanes IV said Wednesday.

At the resumption of the Senate blue ribbon subcommittee’s hearing on alleged anomalies linked to Binay and his family, Trillanes said Binay, who served as Makati mayor for several terms, got around P2 billion from the city government’s contracts for janitorial, security and IT services.

He said all services were cornered by firms whose owners have connections with the Binay family. Binay’s son, Junjun, was the suspended mayor of Makati.

Engineer Mario Hechanova, former head of the Makati General Services Department (GSD), said the Binays earned from the projects in two ways.

“Lahat ng project sa Makati ay bidding-biddingan [fake bidding]… Dalawa ang pwede, ghost deployment at profit sa kumpanya,” he said.

In his presentation before the subcommittee, Hechanova said at least P648 million was earned from the security services and another P612 million from janitorial services for the past 10 years, for a total of P1.26 billion. His presentation did not include figures covering contracts for IT services.

According to Hechnova, 10 percent of employees hired through the said contracts were “ghost” personnel. For security guards, 60 of the 600 were allegedly non-existent personnel.

Hechanova said the monthly salaries of these ghost personnel for the past 10 years went to the pockets of the Binays.

Hechanova is a supposed protegé of former Makati Vice Mayor Ernesto Mercado, one of the witnesses who spoke on the corruption allegations against Binay, his former ally.

Aside from ghost personnel, Binay was also accused of enrolling ghost senior citizens in the city government’s program for the elderly — an accusation denied by Ryan Barcelo, former officer-in charge of the Makati Social Welfare Department (MSWD).

In the same hearing, Arthur Cruto, head of the Makati Action Center, said at least 40 percent of senior citizens listed among blu card holders in Makati City are ghost beneficiaries.
Senior Citizens

But according to Barcelo, who was OIC of MSWD from October 2012 until he was replaced in early July this year, said there was “no way that ghosts may be enrolled to the program.”

“Nag-apply sila ay buhay sila at nag-comply sila sa requirements,” he told the members of the subcommittee.

Binay, the opposition’s presumptive standard bearer in the 2016 elections, has denied allegations of ghost senior citizens in the city’s program. He has also refused to give credence to the Senate blue ribbon subcommittee’s investigation.(MNS)

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