Makati power struggle creates uncertainty, instability–MBC
The Makati Business Club (MBC) warned on Wednesday that the ongoing power struggle at the Makati City Hall had created “an environment of uncertainty and instability in the country’s financial center.”
In a statement, the business group expressed its concern over the potential impact of the ongoing developments at the Makati City Hall on the local economy, stressing that “such a situation is unnecessary and is counterproductive, especially at a time when the economy is steadily growing and that there is renewed investor interest in the Philippines.”
The MBC was referring to Makati City Mayor Junjun Binay’s earlier defiance of the six-month suspension order slapped by the Office of Ombudsman, which then led to tensions between Binay supporters and the policemen who sealed off the entrances at the city hall the other day.
“While we recognize that the mayor has decided to leave city hall as ordered by the Office of the Ombudsman, we note that it took a significant period, two orders from the Ombudsman, and instances of near-violence between the mayor’s supporters and law enforcement officers, before the mayor made his decision, when such an order was immediately executory,” the group explained.
“MBC believes that no one should be above the law—and the demand to respect the rule of law is more heavily levied on elected public servants. Indeed, affected officials are free to avail themselves of all remedies provided under our system. However, they must ultimately and immediately submit themselves to the demands of the law at the first instance an order is given,” it further explained.
According to MBC, the developments at the Makati City Hall clearly illustrate the costs of defying a suspension order which, it pointed out, has almost become common practice of officials facing cases from the proper authorities.
“As part of our democratic processes to address possible wrongdoing, suspension is not a punishment, nor does respecting a suspension order mean an admission of guilt … Now that the case is in the judiciary, it is our hope that the courts will render a fair decision swiftly and in accordance to its merits,” the group further said.