Binay: Why is Gloria still not freed from hospital?

VICE President Jejomar Binay on Tuesday questioned the continuing hospital detention of former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, who is accused of plunder, and the grant of bail to a co-accused for the same offense.

Binay told a forum in Quezon City that Arroyo must be granted bail because she was not a flight risk.

Forum. Vice President Jejomar Binay fields questions during a media forum in Quezon City on Tuesday. Lino Santos

He asked why Arroyo was still being held at the Veterans Memorial Medical Center while her co-accused Jose Taruc V, Sergio Valencia, Manuel Morato and Raymundo Roquero had been granted bail over their alleged misuse of P366 million in confidential and intelligence funds of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office.

Binay said the people accused of plunder or graft must be pursued only if the charges against them were supported by solid evidence.

If elected in 2016, he said, he would be a healing President.

In August, Binay went to the wake of Arroyo’s older brother Arturo de la Rosa Macapagal and conveyed his condolences to Arroyo at the Heritage Memorial Park in Taguig City.

When asked about Senator Grace Poe’s  plan to declare her candidacy for President in the 2016 elections at the University of the Philippines on Wednesday, the Vice President said he does not see anything wrong with it.

“One’s declaration is not an issue to be questioned about,” he said.

But he believes Senator Francis Escudero, the Poe’s presumed running mate, is qualified to run for vice president.

Binay said the United Nationalist Alliance’s selection committee had trimmed down its list of vice presidential bets, but he refused to comment when asked if Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr. was on the list.

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