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House minority slams ‘reckless’ Diño for revealing that 100 congressmen involved in vote buying


by Xave Gregorio

Members of the official House minority bloc hit back at Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) undersecretary Martin Diño for claiming that around 100 congressmen are involved in vote buying, saying his statement is “reckless.”

“Napaka-reckless namang statement ‘yun. May pinangalan ba siya?” said House Minority Leader Danilo Suarez in a media briefing on Wednesday (May 16).

“Bago ka magbigay ng ganung statement dapat may hawak ka ng katibayan,” Suarez said.

For Ako Bicol party-list Rep. Alfredo Garbin, Diño’s statement is “reckless and malicious,” but did concede that some congressmen may have helped politikos in barangays.

“There are some who support barangay officials, but not to the extent of vote buying,” Garbin said.

ABS party-list Rep. Eugene Michael De Vera said there is nothing wrong for politikos to throw their support for barangay executives.

“Kung may gusto sa kanila, may gusto silang iboto siguro naniniwala sa kanila, hindi naman bawal ‘yun kahit politiko ka,” De Vera said.

“Ang bawal lang ‘yung party nage-endorse ng political party o ‘yung barangay candidates miyembro ng political party,” he said.

Diño earlier said in a television interview that around 100 members of the House of Representatives, about 1,000 local government officials and thousands more barangay officials engaged in vote buying to supposedly secure their places in next year’s midterm polls.

In a separate media briefing at the Commission on Elections Command Center hours after the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan polls closed, he said the DILG are verifying these reports.

But several solons have dared Diño to either reveal the names of the 100 who allegedly bought votes or file charges against them.

“Bago ka magbitaw ng salita, sana ay may ebidensiya, may mga affidavit, then file it o the court. Then kapag nai-file na doon sa appropriate court, ‘di saka siya mag-statement,” ACTS OFW party-list Rep. Aniceto Bertiz III said.