JV Ejercito debunks claim that Erap promised to remove BRP Sierra
JV Ejercito debunks claim that Erap promised to remove BRP Sierra
JV Ejercito debunks claim that Erap promised to remove BRP Sierra
by Ellicia Del Mundo14 August 2023
DZRH File photo

Senator Joseph Victor 'JV' Ejercito on Monday debunked the claim that his father, former President Joseph 'Erap' Estrada promised People's Republic of China to remove the military ship BRP Sierra Madre from Ayungin Shoal in the West Philippine Sea.

"That's very inconsistent and common sense tell us that it was [former] President Joseph Estrada who ordered that BRP Sierra Madre be grounded in Ayungin Shoal. So paano naman na siya rin ang magsasabi na remove it, magkaroon ng commitment?" Ejercito said in an interview.


The Senator was referring to the column written by Robert 'Bobby' Tiglao for the newspaper Manila Times.

In the said column, Tiglao claimed that Estrada did promise to remove the BRP Sierra Madre in 1999.

"In the instances when the governments of Estrada and later of President Benigno Aquino 3rd were reminded of that commitment by the Chinese, they claimed that technical difficulties prevented them from removing the landing ship, tank (LST) Sierra Madre. This is an indisputable fact," he said.

Tiglao, who also previously served as the Presidential Spokesperson and Chief of Staff during former president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's administration, also hit at the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) for refusing to correct the claims of National Security Council (NSC) spokesman Jonathan Malaya and Coast Guard official Jay Tarriela on the removal.


Ejercito then stressed that at least the former President "has the balls" to fight for the country's sovereignty and territory.

"Kahit papaano ay meron siyang balls to claim our territory against super powers," he added.

Earlier, China's Foreign Ministry claimed that the country promised several times to tow away the BRP Sierra Madre that has been stationed in Ayungin Shoal since 1999. It then demanded the immediate removal of the military ship.

But President Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos Jr. has asserted that the agreement between China and the Philippines does not exist.

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