United Nationalist Alliance presidential bet Jejomar Binay promised to establish a Mindanao Malacañang regional office in Cagayan De Oro (CDO) if he wins the presidential elections this May 9.
In a chance interview with reporters on Monday (April 18), Binay said that he wanted the presidential palace to be “nearer to the local governments.”
“Kaya ngayon, meron akong ilalagay (na) Malacañang in the south, Malacañang sa northern Luzon noon pa. Ngayon, wala ditong Malacañang sa Mindanao, so maglalagay ako ng Malacañang in Mindanao dito sa Cagayan de Oro,” said Binay.
Facing a crowd of about 20,000 in CDO, Binay said that he will be a hands-on president and personally oversee the developments in the countryside to curb poverty. Binay primarily focused his campaign in combatting poverty and has projected himself as one of the masses, even narrating his story as a kid from a poor family in his television commercials.
“Sinasabi po ngayon, kahirapan pa rin ang problema. I’ve been asked to rate this government, sabi ko failing mark. Bakit? Wala ho talagang naitulong sa mga mahihirap,” he said.
In campaign rally in February, Binay first said that he wanted to build a Malacañang in Mindanao to help Muslims feel the decentralization of power. The vice president then said he would also build a Malacañang in Cebu.
“Para matunton ko po lahat ng problema niyo. Dito po ako magoopisina sa Mindanao sapagkat babantayan ko ang mga local governments will experience the true meaning of decentralization and devolution. Gagawin ko po yan, yung local autonomy,” Binay said in a campaign rally in Lanao Del Norte.
Currently, Binay is using the Coconut Palace located in the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) Complex as the official residence of the Vice President of the Philippines. Prior to this, the government was renting in the Philippine National Bank building in Pasay City for the office of the second highest official in the land.