MANILA – Acting Makati Mayor Romulo ''Kid'' Peña on Saturday said he will make sure that the city's acting vice-mayor won't be eased out in the affairs of the city government.
Speaking to dzMM, Peña said he will make sure that acting vice-mayor Leo Magpantay will be given the office of his choice at the city hall and the assistance he needs in the performance of his duties.
''Ako po ay inaayos ko na ang kanyang opisina. Papipiliin ko siya kung ano ang pinaka-malaking opisinang gusto niya doon. At gusto kong makausap siya para maibigay kung ano man ang kakailanganin niya,'' he said.
He said as the lone opposition official in Makati, it is no secret that he was left out in meetings in Makati and deprived of certain privileges due to a vice-mayor.
Peña became the city's acting mayor after the Office of the Ombudsman suspended Mayor Junjun Binay in connection with the Makati City Science High School building case.
Binay stepped down on July 1 after failing to get an immediate halt order from the Court of Appeals against his preventive suspension.
Even with his new position as acting mayor, Peña refused to use the mayor's office. Instead, he opted to hold office at a smaller space at the city hall's ground floor.
"Mas gugustuhin ko na po na doon ako sa ground floor, because by discipline, even when I was still barangay captain, ang feeling ko, para makita ng lahat, dapat ang barangay official, ang local government official, sila na po talaga ang unang makikita pagtungtong mo sa opisina, sa city hall, sa barangay, makita na agad sila. Talagang ready for action," he said.
Magpantay and all of the city's councilors did not show up during the first flag-raising ceremony at the city hall led by Peña last July 13, even as they attended the birthday celebration of the suspended mayor on the Saturday before that.
Peña said he can't blame the councilors for treating him this way since the Binay family has been ruling Makati for decades.
''Expected na iyon, pero just like in the past, yung una kong upo as vice mayor, gwardyado rin tayo,'' he said.
''You can expect na yung samahan nila hindi pupwedeng basta baliin. Pero ako ay nakikisuyo na ako nandito pansamantala, ineexpect ko na yung intensity ng service ko as acting mayor, eh sana gawin nila yung part nila para sa lungsod."