N. Ecija vice-mayor denies raping beauty queen

ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 09 2012 11:49 AM | Updated as of May 10 2012 02:13 AM

MANILA, Philippines – Pantabangan, Nueva Ecija Vice-Mayor Romeo Borja, Jr. on Wednesday denied allegations of raping an 18-year-old local beauty titlist last year, which left her pregnant.

Borja dismissed the accusations as part of the demolition job against him by his rivals in politics.

The victim, “Jasmin”, filed rape charges against Borja earlier this week at the Department of Justice (DoJ). She accused the mayor of raping her several times between June and September 2011.

Borja said he is ready to answer all the accusations lodged against him as soon as he receives a copy of the complaint.

He admitted being text mates with Jasmin starting January 2011, but said they never had any sexual relationship, making it impossible for him to father the complainant’s child.

Jasmin is now eight months pregnant.

Borja also challenged Jasmin to prove that he is really the father of her baby.

“Kung sinasabi nila na nabuntis eh ako naman ay lalaki, wala naman problema kung mapatunayan nila na sa akin [ang bata]. Hindi naman tayo masamang tao para talikuran [ang responsibilidad] kapag napatunayan na anak ko po iyan,” he said.

Local politics

Borja claimed the rape accusations were part of a smear campaign against him by a political rival.

He said Jasmin’s grandmother, one of the town’s councilor, has been eyeing the mayoralty post.

He added the councilor was also an official of the local chapter of women’s party-list Gabriela, which presented Jasmin to media earlier this week.

“Masasabi ko lang po eh ito’y walang katotohanan. Masyadong maagang pamumulitika ito,” he said.

“Yung nagrereklamo sa akin, actually ang ginagawa nila, hindi lang isang babae ang kanilang kinakalat, na kinakausap nila [para ako’y siraan].”

House help also pregnant

Another complainant was also presented by Gabriela who claimed Borja made sexual advances and even got her pregnant.

 “Mina”, who used to be the Borja family's house help, said she gave birth to the mayor’s child three months ago.

Borja denied fathering Mina’s child. He noted Mina, in her affidavit, admitted having a sexual relationship with one of his staff.

“Eh tignan niyo na lang yung bata kung sino ang kamukha,” he said.

Mina had filed qualified seduction charges against Borja at the Cabanatuan City Prosecutor's Office. The case is awaiting resolution.

Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, meantime, had said she will study the possibility of placing 'Jasmin' and 'Mina' under the department's Witness Protection Program (WPP).