THE resignation of Gilberto “Gibo” Teodoro Jr. as chairman of the Lakas-Kampi-CMD party is not a sign of weakness, Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia said yesterday.

She said it only means he wants to work harder in the campaign.

“The primary importance is on his candidacy and we appreciate that. He must work for himself because we are supporting him.

We fully respect his decision,” said Garcia.

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Teodoro resigned last Tuesday as party chairman, saying he needs to focus on his presidential campaign and cannot tackle the concerns of 18,000 candidates all over the country.

A day after, party president and Saranggani Gov. Miguel Dominguez also resigned, saying he wants to give the incoming chairman a free hand in choosing officials of the party.

But House Speaker Prospero Nograles, a member of the National Advisory Board of Lakas-Kampi-CMD, said local candidates of the ruling party are confused by Teodoro’s resignation as party chairman.

He admitted he didn’t know the resignation was coming.

“Teodoro’s resignation is a shock to me and (was done) without any consultation from us, the previous leaders of the party… I’m supposed to be vice chairman and I don’t know what’s happening,” Nograles said in a text message to Sun.Star Cebu.

Nograles is running for mayor of Davao City.

Told about Dominguez’s resignation, he said: “What has happened to our party? To each his own?”

In Cebu, however, Governor Garcia defended Teodoro.

The resignation does not mean Teodoro admits he is lagging behind and needs to work harder than the other presidential bets.

“It was a clear demonstration of forthrightness, ability to assess the situation and the will to make a decision. There are no gray areas,” added Garcia.

Teodoro met with Garcia, mayors, vice mayors and heads of the Association of Barangay Councils last Tuesday to thank them for their continued support.

Also present were Reps. Pablo Garcia (Cebu, 2nd district), Pablo John Garcia (Cebu, 3rd district) and Benhur Salimbangon (Cebu, 4th district). (Sunnex/JGA)