Binay won’t join Noy government


By Aurea Calica – Vice president-elect Jejomar Binay will no longer be part of the government of incoming president Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, since he turned down all the positions offered to him.

Binay met with Aquino at his home on Times Street in Quezon City at around 1 p.m. yesterday despite having relayed his decision to Aquino Monday night.

“I offered him several posts that he declined. I asked him to think about it,” Aquino said in a text message.

He refused to disclose what positions he offered to Binay.The vice president-elect also refused to discuss details of the two-hour meeting, saying only that it was “cordial.”

“We are friends and it was a social and cordial meeting, not much formality,” Binay said.

Binay, who ran under the Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino and the United Opposition, defeated Aquino’s running mate Sen. Manuel Roxas II.

Aquino said he did not offer Binay the interior and local government portfolio, which Binay had sought because of his 20-year experience as mayor of Makati City.There are speculations that Aquino is considering outgoing Naga City Mayor Jesse Robredo for the position.

Aquino also denied rumors that he offered Binay the transportation and communications portfolio. Binay said he did not want to head any department that he does not have expertise in. In a statement issued after the meeting, Binay’s spokesman Joey Salgado said Binay assured Aquino of his support.

“The vice president-elect assured president-elect Noynoy of his friendship and support and readiness to extend any assistance, whatever is needed,” Salgado said.

Binay was the first to be appointed by Aquino’s mother, the late former President Corazon Aquino, as officer-in-charge of the then municipality of Makati after the first people power revolt in 1986.

De Lima would be an asset to government

Election lawyers yesterday praised the appointment of Commission on Human Rights (CHR) chair Leila de Lima as Justice secretary. “She is the right person for the job. She has the quality of a good secretary of justice,” said election lawyer Romulo Macalintal. Macalintal said De Lima could initiate reforms in the prosecution of election-related cases.

De Lima accepted Aquino’s offer to join his Cabinet last Tuesday. Macalintal said De Lima possesses the “track record, integrity, competence and probity” needed for the position. Aquino’s lawyer, Sixto Brillantes, said De Lima’s appointment is “one of the best appointments” Aquino could make. “Attorney De Lima is incorruptible. She cannot be influenced so she is the best person for the job,” he said.

Brillantes said former Chief Justice Reynato Puno, himself in the shortlist for the position, could have recommended De Lima to Aquino. Before being appointed by President Arroyo as CHR chair in 2008, De Lima was an election lawyer for Senators Aquilino Pimentel III and Alan Cayetano during the 2007 midterm polls.

Malacañang, meanwhile, is optimistic that De Lima would be fair should she pursue cases against Mrs. Arroyo.

Aquino has promised to go after the outgoing President and members of the First Family on allegations of corruption and human rights violations. “If that’s true, I don’t want to speculate, if it’s really the DOJ (Department of Justice) that will undertake any investigation, I think that’s good because at least there would be no politics,” said Executive Secretary Leandro Mendoza.

“The DOJ would be a very professional institution and it’s going to be ruled by events. I don’t want to speculate.”

De Lima has a fixed term of seven years as CHR chair but said she would resign from the commission, after having accepted the appointment.

Retired general to be defense chief

The former Presidential Security Group (PSG) commander of the previous Aquino administration is expected to be appointed as Defense secretary, defense sources said.

But retired Army general Voltaire Gazmin supposedly wants fellow retired Army general Leo Alviz to be installed as defense chief because he wants to be Aquino’s National Security Adviser (NSA).

“While there is no official announcement yet, his (Gazmin) name is now all over the place here at the department as the incoming secretary,” a defense insider said.

Defense Secretary Norberto Gonzales himself said that with Gazmin at the helm, the defense department and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) will be in good hands.

Gonzales said Gazmin is very popular among the rank and file of the Armed Forces.

“If you served in the PSG, your connections in the Armed Forces are really deep,” Gonzales said. “From my knowledge of him (Gazmin), he is highly qualified and will be a good Defense secretary.”

Gonzales promised to support Gazmin should he be installed as the next defense chief.

“If I am called to help him, I am willing to cooperate and give him advice,” he said.

Find more like this: News, Politics

  • U.N. Rights Council to Investigate Killings in Philippine Drug War
  • Philippines declares national alert after 456 die from dengue fever
  • Trying to save the stories of a Philippine culture, one scan at a time
  • Pinoy archaeologist brings new human species discovery to Australia
  • Philippines a slowly ageing society – PIDS study
  • Page 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

    Entertainment

  • Nickelodeon releases first look at rebooted classic kids program Blue’s Clues with Filipino-American host Joshua Dela Cruz
  • How Marvel’s first featured Pinoy superhero can save society
  • This play tells the urgent story of a Filipino comfort woman
  • Will ‘Sahaya’ be the first Pinoy series on Netflix?
  • Z-GIRLS, Z-BOYS with Pinoy members to debut in Korea
  • MORE...

    Features

  • My story, and the new story of Filipino immigration
  • An appreciation of Moro food can bring Pinoy Muslims and Christians closer, says this Muslim chef
  • Showcase of PH culture, heritage
  • US and Philippines: Friends, Partners, and Allies
  • A Transgender Paradox, and Platform, in the Philippines
  • MORE...

    Tourism

  • Northern Blossom Flower Farm: Atok’s floral carpet
  • Philippines records ‘all-time high’ 7.1M tourist arrivals in 2018
  • Philippines island Boracay reopens for test run following huge cleanup
  • Philippines closes ‘cesspool’ tourist island of Boracay
  • Boracay Set to Ban Tourists for Six Months During Island ‘Rehabilitation’
  • MORE...

    Sports

  • Filipino speed skater bags spot in 2020 Winter Youth Olympics
  • Pinoy gymnast Carlo Yulo earns historic qualification in worlds
  • Finding a way to bring the NBA to the Philippines
  • First Filipino table tennis Olympian Ian “Yanyan” Lariba dies at 23
  • Skateboarder Margielyn Didal wins 4th gold for Philippines
  • MORE...

    OFW News

  • Filipino maids’ dragon boat team makes splash in Hong Kong
  • DOLE suspends OFW deployment to Kuwait
  • Some OFWs turn to vlogging to beat loneliness, share life abroad
  • Overseas Filipino Bank to serve immigrants, workers
  • The ‘bagong bayani’ of the Philippines
  • MORE...

    Environment

  • ‘Sordid Chapter’ Ends As Philippines Sends Back Canada’s Trash
  • Southeast Asia became dumping ground for plastic waste – study
  • Boracay Set to Ban Tourists for Six Months During Island ‘Rehabilitation’
  • Boracay: the good, bad and ugly sides to Philippine island for tourists
  • Luzon has greatest concentration of unique mammals
  • MORE...

    Pinoy Places
    and Faces