UNA senatorial bets formalize bid-A A +A
Monday, October 1, 2012
MANILA (2nd Update, 2:47 p.m.) -- Eight senatorial candidates belonging to the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) went to the headquarters of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Monday to file their certificates of candidacy for next year's midterm polls.
They are Senator Gregorio Honasan II, San Juan City Representative Joseph Victor "JV" Ejercito, Cagayan Representative Juan "Jackie" Ponce Enrile, Jr., Zambales Representative Milagros "Mitos" Magsaysay, former senators Ernesto Maceda, Juan Miguel Zubiri, Richard Gordon, former Tarlac governor Margarita "Tingting" Cojuangco.
Businessman Joey de Venecia backed out of the race on Monday to focus on luring investments in the business process outsourcing industry. UNA has until Friday or the close of the filing period to find de Venecia's replacement.
Senators Francis Escudero and Loren Legarda and Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB) Grace Poe-Llamanzares are part of the roster as guest candidates.
The three, however, will campaign onstage with the ruling Liberal Party led by President Benigno Aquino III.
"Basta't patas lang ang trato, kung sila ay sasama sa proclamation (rally) dapat sa amin din. Pag hindi maghiwa-hiwalay na kami. Kung ano ang ibibigay sa UNA bigay mo rin sa LP, kung ano ibibigay sa LP bigay din sa UNA," Vice President Jejomar Binay told reporters.
If not, Binay said the coalition will likely withdraw its support.
Supporters of Magsaysay, Zubiri, and Enrile even came early in the morning to practice their cheers and dances. Tarpaulins expressing support to several politicians were also displayed outside the premises of the Palacio del Gobernador, where the Comelec is located, and the Manila Cathedral.
If elected, Magsaysay said she will push for the review of Oil Deregulation Law, which has been blamed by militant groups for high petroleum prices in the past 15 years.
"Rather than crafting new laws that are already existing provision of old laws, I think that we should make sure that the existing ones are being implemented and enforced, because it is also a main function of lawmakers to monitor and ensure that laws that are passed are implemented to the letter," she said.
Her advocacies will be on education and health.
Enrile, meanwhile, pitched for food sufficiency in light of the growing hunger incidence in the country.
"Our people should not be deprived of feeding themselves in their own country. It is a basic right to have access to food, more importantly, affordable food products," he said.
The coalition earlier assembled at the Manila Hotel before proceeding to the Comelec on board a violet coaster.
They were accompanied by UNA stalwarts Binay, Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and former President Joseph Estrada and Sarangani Representative Manny Pacquiao.
Present during the filing as well were Zubiri's wife Audrey, Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) president Jose "Peping" Cojuangco, Senator Vicente Sotto III, Valenzuela City Mayor Sherwin Gatchalian and Navotas City Representative Toby Tiangco.(Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)