'Sana pinatapos muna nila ako': JV confirms friction with Jinggoy

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 05 2019 09:55 AM | Updated as of Mar 05 2019 10:17 AM

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MANILA - Re-electionist Senator JV Ejercito confirmed Tuesday that he remains at odds with his half-brother, senatorial bet Jinggoy Estrada, despite the latter's act of raising his hand during a campaign sortie last month. 

Speaking to ANC's Headstart, Ejercito said he and his half-brother cannot get along due to differences in outlook and character.

He also criticized Estrada's gesture of raising his hand when they shared the stage during the launch of the campaign of the administration coalition, Hugpong ng Pagbabago, last February 12. 

During the launch, Estrada introduced Ejercito and said they "have not shaken each other's hand for years."

Asked about the gesture, Ejercito said: "Hindi kasi ako artista. I was hoping it was genuine but I was sad to hear that during his birthday, a week after that launch, he said his birthday wish is that he wants 3 of the family members to win. I was not included in that list." 

The 3 are Jinggoy, his daughter, mayoral candidate Janella Ejercito, and his father, Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada. 

"Baka lang nakalimutan lang niya na I am also running," Ejercito added. 

Ejercito and Estrada are both running alongside each other in administration-backed Hugpong ng Pagbabago. The two have been at odds since Ejercito signed a committee report tagging Estrada in the multibillion-peso fund diversion scam in May 2014. 

Ejercito, however, said the friction started even earlier when he succeeded Estrada as mayor of San Juan. "It worsened the friction...I had my own people and strategies," he said. 

He said Estrada's act of running for senator during the same year that he is running for re-election could split the vote. Estrada has nabbed the 6th-12th ranking while Ejercito got the 15th-16th ranking in the latest Pulse Asia survey. 

Ejercito is also not on speaking terms with his father, Joseph Estrada, after he decided to leave his father's Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino party for the Nationalist People's Coalition. 

Jinggoy earlier said his father has no problem if he and JV both ran in the 2019 polls. 

In the interview, Ejercito said his father might have felt abandoned after he left the PMP.

"I hope that he will also appreciate that I stand by my own principles. I am just not in favor of the two of us running. The Senate has only 24 seats, we are vying for 12 seats right now. We are running to be representatives of the people, not as representatives of our families," he said. 

"Two family members running together is like suicide...Sana pinatapos muna nila ako," he said.