MANILA, Philippines - Sen. Jinggoy Estrada yesterday revealed that he sold his house in North Greenhills, San Juan and is building another house at the nearby posh Wack Wack subdivision in Mandaluyong City at the cost of P120 million.
Estrada said the construction started sometime last year after he sold his Greenhills house.
He said the proceeds of the sale financed the construction of his new home in Mandaluyong.
“OK, I sold my house and lot in Greenhills. At yun ang pinangbayad ko (That’s what I used for my new house),” Estrada said in a phone patch interview with the Senate media.
However, the line was cut as he was about to answer queries on why his new purchase was not stated in his latest statement of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN).
In a follow-up question by The STAR, Estrada said his Wack Wack residence has been included in his SALN for 2012.
He said it was under the category of investments, which amounted to about P122 million.
Estrada said he sold his Greenhills residence sometime in 2011 for about P100 million, which he then used to purchase the Wack Wack property.
“How can I place it (Wack Wack) in my properties in the SALN when it has not been transferred to my name?” he asked.
According to Estrada, he sold his Greenhills home because it is more expensive to renovate the old house so he preferred to build a new one.
“The house is in a state of disrepair. It would be more costly to renovate it,” he added.
Estrada later granted an interview with reporters at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), where he saw his parents, who were flying to Japan, off.
“I am not leaving,” he told reporters at NAIA, saying he was just accompanying his father, former President and now Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada, and his mother, former senator Loi Ejercito.
The news about his Wack Wack property came out hours before Estrada dropped his “bombshell” Wednesday, alleging some of his colleagues in the Senate received P50 million as “incentive” for impeaching former chief justice Renato Corona last year.
Social news network Rappler reported Estrada was building a P120-million mansion in Wack Wack.
Rappler cited a source privy to Estrada’s expenses. The source revealed that the senator bought the 3,000-square meter lot in 2012.
It said lot prices in the subdivision range from P70,000 to P80,000 per square meter, which means that the lot alone costs from P210 million to P240 million.
It said it is common knowledge in Wack Wack that the huge property belongs to Estrada.
Estrada’s SALN for 2012 showed his real properties were valued at P66 million while his personal properties were at P149.16 million.
Under his SALN, Estrada incurred total liabilities at P21.66 million.
Estrada also listed another real estate property at Corinthian Hills in Quezon City. His total net worth was placed at P193.5 million during the same period.
Documents from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) also showed the real property firm Verdant Forest, that sold to Estrada the P120-million house in Mandaluyong City, was not active in filing its reportorial statements with corporate regulators.
Estrada reportedly bought last year the lot from Verdant Forest, which owns several parcels of land in the area totaling 3,084 square meters.
Estrada’s property reportedly has Navotas Rep. Tobias Tiangco as his neighbor.
But Tiangco, for his part, said he does not know if the mansion being built on a sprawling lot near his house belongs to Estrada.
“I do not know my neighbors. I am not their keeper,” he said.
According to Tiangco, he sold his house in Greenhills, San Juan in 2010 and bought a lot along Wack Wack Road in nearby Wack Wack subdivision where he constructed his new house, to which he transferred in 2012.
Tiangco said he bought his lot from Verdant Holdings.
“They were offering me a 4,000-square meter property consisting of several lots, which I said I could not afford. So I bought two lots totaling 997 square meters,” he said.
Tiangco said there are two ongoing constructions near his property.
“There is construction work on the smaller lot to my right and there is construction work on the lot to my left which extends to the back of my property,” he said.
Tiangco added that he knows that the bigger lot, measuring about 3,000 square meters, belongs to Verdant Holdings, not to Estrada.
He revealed that another congressman, Juan Pablo Bondoc of Pampanga, is just a house away from the sprawling lot.
Responding to questions, Tiangco said he does not know who owns Verdant Holdings.
He said he only met its corporate secretary, a certain Liza Logan, when they signed the deed of sale for his lot. – Christina Mendez, Jess Diaz, Neil Jerome Morales, Rudy Santos