TUCP backs Rama-Labella tandem

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Saturday, May 11, 2013


THE Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) yesterday endorsed the tandem of Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama and Councilor Edgardo Labella for mayor and vice mayor for tomorrow’s elections.

Former senator and TUCP president Ernesto Herrera said his group is endorsing Rama and Labella because “the city needs a new kind of leadership.”

“Dali sila duolon (They are approachable). They are innovative. For the mayor, he has already done a lot within his three terms,” he said.

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Asked why they are not endorsing the entire Team Rama slate, Herrera said it will be up to TUCP members to decide who they will vote
for.

Herrera said TUCP “has a sizeable number of voters” that include members of the banking industry in the city, transport groups, general workers’ union, the business process outsourcing sector and the overseas Filipino workers.

In a news conference he called yesterday, Herrera hit the recent endorsement of the Associated Labor Union (ALU)-TUCP of almost all the Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan (BOPK) candidates.

Herrera said ALU is a member of a “bogus” TUCP.

“We are the legitimate TUCP. There is only one TUCP that is an affiliate of International Trade Union Congress and that is us and I am the legitimate president and not Kito (Atty. Democrito T.) Mendoza. There’s should be no confusion on that,” he said.

Discredited

Sought for comment, ALU-TUCP education director Art Barrit said Herrera is a “discredited” labor leader.

“His leadership in the trade union movement has been tarnished, being the father of contractualization. He has no organized union to speak of either in Cebu, Manila and anywhere in the country,” Barrit said.

Barrit said Herrera was kicked out of ALU because of his alleged questionable dealings on union matters.

Barrit also said Herrera is no longer allowed to present himself as TUCP president after the labor department’s Bureau of Labor Relations decided in favor of the presidency of Mendoza.

No endorsement

Meanwhile, Councilor John Philip Po II, Sangguniang Kabataan Federation (SKF) Cebu City president, denied the pronouncement of SKF vice president Deveyn Cabataña that the federation has endorsed Team Rama.

Po told Sun.Star Cebu yesterday that SKF decided not to endorse any candidates for tomorrow’s election, saying that they want their group to remain non-partisan.

Po said if Cabataña is supporting Team Rama, she should have said it in her personal capacity and should not have used the name of the federation.

Kenny Glenn Silud, federation auditor and SK chairperson of Sawang Calero, also denied that the federation has endorsed Team Rama.
Like Po, Silud said Cabataña should have announced it as her personal stand.

Silud told Sun.Star Cebu that Po wanted to remain non-partisan and not endorse any political group or candidates.

With the use of the federation’s name in the Team Rama endorsement, several officers and members of the Cebu City SK decided to sign a manifesto of support for BOPK.

So far, Silud said the federation has gathered over 300 signatures out of the 600 members.

Meanwhile, Cebu City south district congressional aspirant Aristotle Batuhan will not toe the line with Team Rama as far as endorsing senatorial candidates.

Batuhan said he will support all nine senatorial candidates of the United Nationalist Alliance.

But for his three other senatorial candidates, he chose to support independent candidate Teddy Casiño and Team PNoy’s Risa Hontiveros and Allan Peter Cayetano.

He said he picked Casiño and Hontiveros because he wants “progressive candidates” in the Senate.

Rama had announced that Team Rama will be supporting religious leader Bro. Eddie Villanueva, Puerto Princesa Mayor Edward Hagedorn and Cayetano.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on May 11, 2013.

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