Amid a probe of his projects when he was still Makati City Mayor, Vice President Jejomar Binay claims this is yet another "demolition campaign" by his critics.
Binay said the Commission on Audit (COA) probe was spearheaded by "insecure" political opponents.
"Di ko naman tinatanggi sa inyo na ako ay magkakandidato (I am not denying that I will be running in the next elections)," Binay said in a statement on Wednesday, referring to his plan of running in the 2016 presidential elections.
"Eto nga, hindi pa nga ako kandidato winawasak na ko. Siguro dala na rin ito ng survey, nai-insecure sila sa lumalabas na survey (There is black propaganda against me this early. Maybe this is because my opponents are getting insecure about the results of recent surveys)," Binay added.
COA on Monday has reportedly looked into the Makati Friendship Suites, a hostel for visiting officials which uses buildings originally purchased as a housing project for informal settlers whose houses were razed by fire.
Binay said the probe, led by COA Commissioner Heidi Mendoza, is "not normal," noting that the issues being raised have already been addressed in previous audits including those during his stint as Mayor.
"Hindi naman maitatangging politically motivated ito (This is obviously politically motivated)," Binay said.
"Kung maya’t maya ay binabalikan ka ng issue, hindi na yata normal iyon. Mayroon nang ibang dahilan (If the same issue is being repeatedly being raised, that is no longer normal. There must be another motive)," he added.
Binay noted that Mendoza takes particular interest in complaints against him since the COA Commissioner has led past investigations which served as the basis for cases against the Vice President and his wife, former Makati Mayor Elenita Binay. The cases have been dismissed by the Ombudsman and the Sandiganbayan.
Binay further alleged that the Mendoza audit is part of a demolition job against him, about which he had been tipped off.
"Iyang demolition, sa Disyembre mawawala na daw ako, hindi ko alam kung anong ibig sabihin ng mawawala (This demolition campaign wants me gone by December, although I don't know what 'gone' specifically means)," Binay said.
Philippine economic growth in the first quarter slowed to a three-year low of 5.2 percent, well below forecasts, due to lethargic government spending and weak exports, officials said Thursday. "While growth in the private sector remains robust, the slower than programmed pace of public spending, particularly the decline in public construction, has slowed down the overall growth of the economy," Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan told reporters. "Exports were the other source of the …