'Not a mansion': Iloilo mayor opens house to curious public, inspecting officers

Jennifer Garcia, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 31 2017 05:36 PM

Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog’s house, an eye-catcher for those visiting the Iloilo river esplanade, is now the subject of a probe.

While the structure is known to many as the lavish "White House,” the Mabilog family does not consider it a mansion. 

Mabilog's abode, mounted at a lot inherited from his parents, has two floors: the ground floor serves as the venue for family occasions while the second floor houses the master’s bedroom, dining room, and the kitchen.

“Looking at the outside, it’s big because there is no other structure. But if you look inside it is just an ordinary house. A normal house,” Mabilog’s spokesperson, Atty. Mark Piad said during the interview.

Prior to joining politics, Mabilog was a businessman while his wife Marivic worked in Canada for at least two decades before retiring in 2016.

The mayor’s house was first opened to the public in 2016 when Manuel Boy Mejorada filed an administrative and criminal complaint at the Office of the Ombudsman against Mabilog in 2015. Mejorada alleged that the mayor has unexplained wealth. The complaint is still pending at the Ombudsman.

The issue about Mabilog’s house resurfaced after President Rodrigo Duterte recently ordered a lifestyle check against the mayor.

On Thursday, the National Bureau of Investigation inspected Mabilog’s house.

Atty. Piad said Mabilog welcomes Duterte's directive and that the investigation will give the mayor an opportunity to show his house and answer speculations. The mayor is also willing to submit documents to be used for the investigation.

Duterte named Mabilog as among alleged “narco-politicians” last year and has tagged Iloilo as the "most shabulized" city in the country.