dear senator binay

21 November 2014

Dear Sen. Binay,

Earlier this week, you released a statement to the press containing your thoughts, speculations, theories and guesses on things surrounding the construction of the Iloilo Convention Center. This comes after you participated in the Senate hearing on the same subject – a hearing which to many was an utter waste of time due to the abject lack of basis for the accusations of malfeasance that were made.

It is sad to note that you again make the same accusations without proof of any kind. Further, the conclusions (if they can be called that) that you make in your statement are simply devoid of logic much less solid reasoning. Conclusions which a 7-year old (okay, I exaggerate) can tear apart like the wrapper on their Christmas gifts.

While we do not begrudge your duty to investigate anomalies, we, the taxpayers who pay your salary, surely should not be begrudged our right to expect more from a Senator of the Republic. The conduct of any investigation, as you know, should begin with a solid appreciation of the facts before one should even come to a suspicion of misconduct. An even higher standard is expected before a conclusion can be made. Surely you must know that a convention center will be a boon to the hotel industry of any locale. Oh wait – actually you don’t. Your statement exposes your ignorance and only serves to highlight the misgivings of many at having you as a Senator of the Republic.

You ask how Megaworld can dictate to government the use of donated land. How do you think Makati was built? Did the government then dictate to the private sector how things should be done? Yes, government is supposed to regulate the private sector to curb their excesses. But how excessive is it to ask that the ICC design be in conformity with the over-all design of the Megaworld which after all will be based on a theme re-creating Old Iloilo? How can a design based on the Paraw (a truly Ilonggo icon) be disadvantageous to the city of Iloilo? Do you even know that the land upon which the Rizal Memorial Stadium stands will revert back to the estate of its private benefactor if it is used for any other purpose other than for a sports facility?

It is really simple – you cannot impose upon a benefactor as long as what the benefactor asks for is within the bounds of law. Anyone who does is an ingrate.

I sincerely hope that you exercise restraint when making accusations. We understand you are young and have a lot to learn. But please think before you do or say things for in this case you have not only cast aspersions on those you accuse of impropriety, you have also insulted private Filipino citizens who conceptualized and are working on this project. If it’s not too much to ask, having a seasoned mentor would be helpful in guiding you as you mature into the dignified Senator that the office that you hold demands. On the other hand, if you strongly believe that such maturation is not required, then God help us all.




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