The public tit-for-tat between Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto and Vice Mayor Iyo Bernardo continues, after Bernardo threatened to take legal action against Sotto.
Bernardo released a statement on Jan. 19 taking exception to Sotto's recent remarks at a flag-raising ceremony that he said taints their family's reputation.
"Dumudulog na po ako ng legal advice sa mga susunod na maari kong hakbang sa kanyang (Sotto) mga paratang sa akin," Bernardo said.
On Twitter, Sotto replied to a quote card posted by Philstar.com about Bernardo's statement.
Bakit "family's reputation".. may sinabi ba ako tungkol sa pamilya niya? ?— Vico Sotto (@VicoSotto) January 20, 2022
"Bakit 'family's reputation'.. may sinabi ba ako tungkol sa pamilya niya?" Sotto tweeted, followed by a tears of joy emoji.
His comment has over 10,000 likes and 2,000 retweets as of writing.
Word war history
It all started in December last year, when Bernardo uploaded a video compiling supposed complaints from Pasig residents regarding the distribution of ayuda in the city.
"Ang mga Pasigueño ay lubos na nahihirapan na kolektahin ang tulong na para sa kanila," Bernardo narrated in the video, adding that the supposed difficulties could have been avoided if the cash distribution were held in barangay halls and courts instead of a single place for all residents.
"Ang tunay na lider, uunahin ang kapakanan at hindi pinahihirapan ang kaniyang mga nasasakupan," the vice mayor said in an apparent jab to Sotto. "We don't deserve this kind of service. Dapat maayos, may camera man o wala."
In reaction to his words, Sotto told Bernardo during a flag raising ceremony in the city last Jan. 10 to do his job as vice mayor first before criticizing the local government's performance, noting that he hasn't been allegedly replying to his texts and calls.
He also wondered why the vice mayor had just become vocal after six years of service.
"Ngayon po, sinasabi ko ulit, walang masama mamuna," Sotto said. "Pero pagdating sa mga pormal na proseso bilang mga halalal ng bayan, kailangan magtrabaho muna tayo. Anong karapatan mamuna kung yung pormal na tungkulin natin di natin nagagampanan?"
After over a week, Bernardo posted a video reaction on Sotto's remarks, via the Facebook page "Pasig Dapat Pasigueniyo" on late Jan. 18. The page describes itself as a “political affiliation, promoting Pasig should be headed by Pasigueniyo.”
Bernardo also uploaded the same video reaction on his official Facebook page in the afternoon of Jan. 19, in which he announced that he'll be seeking legal remedies after what Sotto has said.
"Kaya ako magsasalita ngayon ay para proteksiyunan ang pangalan ng pamilya Caruncho na pilit mong dinudumihan,” Bernardo exclaimed in the video.
In the video, he compared the chief executive to an actor who’s supposedly masking the flaws of his governance.
“Parang pelikula, ako kasama ang buong city council ang direktor at camera man," the vice mayor said. "Hindi mabubuo ang isang pelikula nang wala kami, kung saan ang aktor ay umaarte lamang para mabigyang buhay ang kwento pero sila ang sumisikat at pinapalakpakan."
"Nakakalungkot ang Pasig. Naging isang pelikula na lamang, puro palabas,” he added.
The vice mayor also criticized Sotto for using social media.
“Swerte ka, Mayor Vico," he said. "Hindi mo naranasan ang panahong sinusukat ang eleksyon sa husay ng paglilingkod. Sa kalye nasusukat ang tunay na serbisyo at tunay na pamamalasakit. Ngayon, malungkot na ginagamit ang internet para matabunan ang lahat ng pagkakamali at pagkukulang sa serbisyo."
Bernardo is running against Sotto as mayor of Pasig in the 2022 national elections.
Sotto, meanwhile, is currently under isolation after testing positive for COVID-19.