MANILA, Philippines--Fasten your seatbelt, hold your breath and eyebrows. Here we go.
No, it's not the healthy bicycle.
The bachelor president who won by landslide for his promise of anti-corruption, clean government and an end to wasteful spending, said on Thursday that he had plunged on a good deal for a second-hand white entry-level model Porsche sportscar that is worth PhP4.5 million (US$102,000).
The announcement sparked criticism in a country where more than 30 percent earn below one dollar a day.
It will be recalled that a few weeks ago, the president banned the government from buying expensive vehicles.
It was reported by Inquirer.net that the 50-year-old president sold his old BMW and took some personal loans to buy the costly sportscar.
Milo Tanchuling, secretary general of the Freedom from Debt Coalition, an activist group, told AFP, "It appeared to be out of character. He had campaigned against luxury cars and here he is buying a Porsche."
Tanchuling further said, "There is a danger that it will be viewed by many as a sign of extravagance and an unnecessary flaunting of wealth amid massive poverty."
The bachelor president, who up to now has not yet won the hearts of his romantic interests said, "I was happy with the deal because its mileage was less than 10,000 kilometers."
Defending the president, spokesman Edwin Lacierda said that the car's value had significantly depreciated. If it did not depreciate, the president would not even consider buying it.
Aquino is said to be taking the wheel from his driver during provincial trips. Driving on smooth clear roads is one luxury he enjoys.