MASANTOL -- At least 300 local government and village officials of Masantol last Saturday, September 30, took their oath as newest members of President Rodrigo Duterte's party, Partido Demokratiko Pilipinas - Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban).
Officials led by Mayor Danilo Guintu, members of the Sangguniang Bayan and barangay captains and kagawads of the 26 barangays joined the mass oath taking held at the Municipal Civic Center.
PDP-Laban Central Luzon Chairman Tito Mendiola, who facilitated the swearing-in of the new members, said he was overwhelmed by the number of Masantoleños who wanted to be part of the ruling PDP-Laban.
"Medyo marami-rami ito at nakatutuwa na sila ang nag-initiate na maging miyembro ng partido," he said.
Mendiola, however, clarified that participants first underwent Basic Membership Seminar (BMS) to determine their willingness to become PDP-Laban members.
The BMS, Mendiola said, discusses the history, belief and programs pushed by the PDP-Laban, especially the advocacy to change the government system to federalism.
"May basic membership training muna tapos kung nagustuhan nila 'yung programa o hindi, sila ang magdedesisyon bago sila tuluyan mag take oath at maging member ng PDP-Laban," he said.
Guintu, who is the current chairman of PDP-Laban Masantol Chapter, said that the 350 participants are just the first batch of Masantoleños who will join the ruling party.
He noted that the mass oath taking is part of the town's way of showing support to the programs of President Duterte.
"Gusto namin ipakita na buo ang suporta ng Masantol sa partido ng ating Presidente dahil nakita natin ang programa niya para sa ikauunlad ng bansa," Guintu stressed.
He added the event is also part of the preparation for federalism government that is being pushed by the political party.
Guintu noted that another batch of Masantoleños, consisting of leaders and residents, will also take oath before the year ends.
"Hindi po ito sapilitan. Nagkakaroon lang ng information dissemination at kung sino ang gustong maging miyembro ay pwede dahil bukas ang partido sa lahat ng Filipino," he said.