Senator Imee Marcos is unimpressed by her brother’s Cabinet team for recommending the veto of her pet bill creating the Bulacan airport economic zone.
Tuloy ang airport! Bongbong supports Ramon Ang’s Bulacan ecozone despite vetoing’s Imee’s pet bill
“Alam ng kapatid ko ito magaling ang aking ading (brother), magaling si Bongbong. Ang kinatatakutan ko e baka hindi na-aral nang maigi or merong naggagaling-galingan,” said Imee in an interview with reporters.
The ecozone is a key component of the P740 billion international gateway to be built by ultra bilyonaryo Ramon S. Ang’s San Miguel Corp.
Knives out and it’s just Day One! Bongbong trashes Imee’s pet bill creating Bulacan airport ecozone
Marcos, who shepherded the bill in the Senate during the Duterte administration, said she “prayed” that Bongbong’s veto, carried out on his first day in office on July 1, would have “no chilling effect” on investors.
When asked by Bilyonaryo if she was alluding to Executive Secretary Vic Rodriguez (who sent the veto message to Congress) or the economic team led by Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno (an ally of former Finance Secretary Sonny Dominguez who vigorously opposed the Bulacan airport), Imee replied: “Maritess (gossiper) kayo.”
Imee made it clear she does not want any squabble with her brother. “Hindi ko alam at hindi rin ako papayag na pinagsasabong kami so hindi ko talaga alam, pero nagulat ako kasi akala ko tapos na, ” said Imee.
In the veto message, Bongbong said the ecozone would pose a “substantial financial risk to the country”, an echo of Dominguez’s aversion to fiscal perks in ecozones.
But Press Secretary Trixie Cruz-Angeles clarified later that Bongbong supported the construction of the Bulacan airport which would push through despite the veto.
Cruz-Angeles cited the Bulacan ecozone bills’ failure to provide “audit provisions for the Commission on Audit, procedures for the expropriation of lands awarded to agrarian reform beneficiaries and a master plan for the specific boundaries of the economic zone.”
But Imee said Malacanang’s messaging on the veto was hazy. “Nagtataka ako kung ano kaya yung mga amendment na yon. Siyempre wala namang nagsasabi na perfect yung bill, wala namang batas na perfect pero ang pinagtatakhan ko yung mga binabanggit na kailangan palitan, katulad ng exemption from COA. There is no such exemption,” said Imee.
Imee said Bongbong should tell his economic team to take a stand on ecozones. “Ano ba talaga ang direksyon? No new ecozones or pwede ang ecozones? Yes or no na lang. Di ba? Simple lang,” said Imee.
“Alam niyo ang economic team ang dapat mauna. I don’t want to jump the gun on anyone. The proper process is through LEDAC (Legislative Executive Development Advisory Council),” she added.