Monday, February 8, 2010

Villar has spent over half a billion pesos on ads so far

BusinessWorld Online reported that presidential aspirant Sen. Manuel B. Villar was at 14th place in the list of top 20 advertisers in the last quarter of 2009. Villar spent P543 million from October to December 2009, a 551% increase from last year. That probably does not include those ads paid for his "friends". And it's not even the start of  "official" campaign period.

There is no reason to doubt the validity of the report given that Villar's ads are really all over the media. Perhaps the figure is even understated. That figure could easily go up if we factor in the production costs of the ads.

What the voters should realize is how a politician can manage to amass a fabulous fortune by influencing the public works projects around his properties. First, make the public works department construct roads for your properties even if there are on-going road projects for that. Then, make the government pay top money for your properties even if adjacent properties are not as expensive. The politician cuts it both ways - by kickbacks on the road project and by getting paid premium price for the properties. But wait, there's more. The properties now are valued much, much more because of the road improvements.

Don't wonder why more than half a billion on advertising in just three months is peanuts, and he's not even officially campaigning yet.

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