Angara, Binay cite need for 'permanent office' for Vice President

Katrina Domingo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 30 2020 01:03 PM

Vice President Leni Robredo meets with the Inter-agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD) at the Office of the Vice President on November 8, 2019. Charlie Villegas, OVP/File

MANILA - Two senators on Wednesday pushed for the building of a "permanent office" for the Vice President of the Philippines, noting how the second highest official of the country has been renting various locations for his or her office.

The Office of the Vice President (OVP) holds "no institutional entitlement," Sen. Sonny Angara said during a budget hearing.

"The vice president has no official residence, no official vehicle so talagang medyo dehado po ang OVP (the OVP is really at a disadvantage)," he said.

We have to give "dignity" to the Office of the Vice President," said Sen. Nancy Binay, daughter of former Vice President Jejomar Binay.

Binay recalled that after being elected Vice President in 2010, her father rented an office in the headquarters of the Philippine National Bank (PNB) in Pasay City before transferring to the Coconut Palace at the Cultural Center of the Philippines Complex.

Incumbent Vice President Leni Robredo has been using the Quezon City Executive House as her office since her election in 2016.

"When my father was vice president, lagi niyang reklamo mas malaki pa 'yung budget ng barangay namin sa Makati kaysa sa OVP," Binay said, prompting other lawmakers to laugh during the hybrid hearing.

(When my father was vice president, he always complained that the budget of our village in Makati is even bigger than the budget of the OVP.)

"Kaya ang biro niya demotion iyon [pagiging vice president]," she said.

(That's why he always joked that being vice president was a demotion.)

The elder Binay was a long-time Makati mayor.

Angara and Binay have yet to say how the Senate plans to create or designate a "permanent office" for the vice president.