One of my officemates provided a link of Igan and Winnie Monsod's interview with Mikey Arroyo in their morning show, Unang Hirit. The segment title was Unang Balita and the interview lasted for 15 minutes.
During the show, the two notable broadcast journalists (who instantly became my heroes) fearlessly questioned the incumbent congressman regarding his Statement of Assets and Liabilities (SAL) and net worth, which is indeed one of the most pressing issues raised against his family right now. Ignited by the luxurious dinner of her mother, President Arroyo, the media men seem to put the spotlight on GMA's family so they could at least explain how they earn millions (maybe even billions, who knows?) of pesos during their term amidst the ongoing recession in our country.
After watching the interview, I learned that in 2002, Mikey's income was a modest (in Filipino politician’s standards, at least) 5 million. But in 2005, it increased to a whopping 76 million. That is not a typographical error. And as if that wasn’t enough, in 2008, it ballooned to a staggering 99 million pesos. Nintey nine. Million. Pesos. Come on! This guy is a good businessman. He must start building a business school so he could at least share his knowledge on how to earn millions in a span of 3 years.
Plus, he can also share how on earth a person can have the guts to say, "Why don't any of you sue me in court to get this over with?" when questioned on national TV (take note: He is a public official). It was like saying that people should get lost and that getting answers from him is just a waste of anyone’s time. And of course, anyone can see and sue them in court and they wouldn’t feel the least threatened. With a money and power like that?
Here are the other statements from Mikey Arroyo during the interview (Yes, I exerted effort to transcribe his "witty" lines):
1. Stop saying it's my house... It's the house owned by the beachway...
2. Go and look for it there. (His response when asked who were the other shareholders)
3. When you're in doubt, sue me in court.
4. If you have questions, ask my lawyer when she comes here.
5. Hindi naman ganong kalakihan 'yan! (Pertaining to the SALN questioned by Winnie and Igan. Yeah, hindi ganoon kalaki. 5 million to 76 million? I have to agree because you might sue me).
And a very interesting exchange between Mikey and Winnie:
Mikey: That's a very sarcastic laugh!
Winnie: Of course!
His supporters might say that the interview was malicious and was "nitpicking" against him, but I guess he was actually given an opportunity to explain his side. I suppose he knew that controversies are just part of being a public official and people have the right to question him. Oh politics. What else can I say?
Here are the links:
Interview Part 1
Interview Part 2