Sen. Trillanes Reopening Makati City Cake Supplier Inquiry
Yesterday, Friday, Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV hinted that the Senate blue ribbon subcommittee has plans to revisit the issue plaguing Makati City. This is in reference to the cake controversy wherein the Binays are allegedly the one’s supplying the city’s cakes. Makati City is known to give their senior residents cakes on their birthdays. There are also reports that the 3 Binay siblings namely Makati Representative Abigal Binay, Makati Mayor Junjun Binay and Senator Nancy Binay are all directors and cofounders of the placeholder company said to be supplying the cakes. Given this info, Trillanes further reiterated that the blue ribbon subcommittee’s witness was definitely telling the truth in earlier investigations. He added that this also proves that VP Binay’s spokespersons and Sen. Nancy were lying when they vehemently denied such acts. In response, Senator Nancy Binay once more denied the allegations via a text message sent through her press officer. In the text message, she stated that she is not and never has supplied cakes for the city.
The investigation launched by the AMLC or the Anti-Money Laundering Council discovered that the three siblings were listed as among the founders of Millennium Food Chains Corporation, which is a suspected dummy company of the family. Alongside the founders of Millennium listed were Kim and Erlinda Chong who also own Cups & Mugs Kitchenette which is the company listed as supplying the city’s birthday cakes.
Trillanes says that this dummy business raises concerns of conflict of interest. Alongside this, there are also issues being raised such as the foregoing of public biddings which are unfair to other bakeshops and cake suppliers.
Among those that testified in the earlier hearings was Mario Hechanova. Hechanova, former head of general services in Makati, stated that he was once called to VP Binay’s office to discuss payment for “Nancy’s cakes.” Ernesto Mercado, former vice-mayor of Makati, also concurred with the findings that the Chongs were acting as the front for the family’s cake supply business. In line with a petition from the AMLC, the Court of Appeals also sent out an order to freeze the bank accounts of the Chongs citing questionable transactions with the Binays. Furthermore, the senate blue ribbon subcommittee is also considering citing in contempt the Chongs and other people involved who are ignoring subpoenas that are being served. Trillanes says that the approval of this move by the subcommittee would help weed out the Binay associates and dummies.