NPC, LP deny split rumors-A A +A
Wednesday, February 20, 2013
MANILA -- The spokesperson of the Nationalist People's Coalition (NPC) on Wednesday denied reports that they are breaking its ties with the ruling Liberal Party (LP) for the May midterm elections.
"Our commitment to PNoy (President Benigno Aquino III) and the LP stands. We are their partner and will remain as such," NPC spokesperson and Valenzuela Representative Rex Gatchalian said.
"There is no truth to the news report that the NPC is breaking its partnership agreement with the LP. None of the party officials made that statement. The party is steadfast in working towards the electoral success of the coalition candidates," he added.
NPC and LP forged a coalition for the May 13 midterm elections. Reelectionist Senator Loren Legarda is the lone NPC member running for senator under the LP-led Team PNoy slate.
Cagayan Representative Jack Enrile, also a member of the NPC, is running for senator under the ticket of the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA).
Also under the Team PNoy coalition are the Nacionalista Party, the Laban ng Demokratikong Pilipino, and the Akbayan Party.
Newspaper reports quoted former Pangasinan representative Mark Cojuangco, son of NPC founder and president emeritus Eduardo "Danding" Cojuangco, saying the candidates of the LP will not get the support of their party.
The LP has three candidates in the Team PNoy slate: former senators Jamby Madrigal and Ramon "Jun" Magsaysay Jr., and presidential cousin Paolo Benigno "Bam" Aquino IV.
Cojuangco said only Enrile, Legarda, and former NPC member Senator Francis "Chiz" Escudero are assured of the party's support.
Cojuangco, NPC's provincial chairman in Pangasinan, said their pullout from the coalition agreement was a retaliation following the filing of murder charges against its members, Pangasinan Governor Amado Espino and Representative Jesus Celeste. The two are blamed for the death of Infanta Mayor Ruperto Martinez.
But Gatchalian said Cojuangco was "taken out of context."
"Congressman Mark Cojuangco clarified to the party leadership that what he meant was - the party is duty bound to support its partymates running for the Senate. But he did not mean the partnership with the LP is off," Gatchalian said.
Team PNoy campaign manager Senator Franklin Drilon also said there was "no truth" behind the supposed break-up of the two political parties.
Eastern Samar Representative Ben Evardone, one of the spokespersons for Team PNoy, meanwhile suspects that UNA is behind the rumored pullout of NPC.
"UNA is at it again. The report that NPC has bolted Team Pnoy is untrue. It is part of a tsunami of intrigues to break the formidable force of the coalition," Evardone said in a text message.
"It is unfortunate that they are resorting to this tactics. It is a sign of desperation. We reiterate our call to focus on issues and platforms in this campaign," he added. (Kathrina Alvarez/Sunnex)