NEGROS Occidental Governor Alfredo Marañon Jr. will join the party of President Rodrigo Duterte.
A party official who requested anonymity confirmed to Sun.Star Bacolod last night that Marañon will be sworn in as member of Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) in Manila today by Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III, who is also the party president.
A highly-placed Capitol source also confirmed on Wednesday that the governor will join Duterte’s party.
Marañon supported the presidential bid of Duterte’s opponent, Liberal Party standard bearer Manuel Roxas II, but after Duterte assumed office, the governor has assured support to the programs of the new president, including the anti-drug campaign and federalism.
Marañon, who leads the United Negros Alliance, has no affiliation with any national party.
He previously belonged to the Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC), where he was a provincial chairman, but in 2013, he left the NPC along with former Fourth District representative Jeffrey Ferrer.
Meeting with Duterte
Some local officials in Negros Island Region (NIR) led by Marañon and Negros Oriental Governor Roel Degamo met with Duterte last night in Malacañang.
Marañon and Degamo, along with other governors, took their oaths as officers of the League of Provinces of the Philippines.
Marañon was elected adviser of the league president while Degamo was chosen vice president for the Visayas and regional chair.
Degamo said he already took his oath as PDP-Laban member three weeks ago.
Mayors also met with Dutere last night when they took their oaths as officers of the League of Cities of the Philippines.
Mayors from NIR who were present were Evelio Leonardia of Bacolod City, Agustin Ernesto Bascon of Himamaylan City, and Felipe Antonio Remollo of Dumaguete City.
Cadiz City Mayor Patrick Escalante missed the oath-taking as he was sick.
Leonardia was elected deputy secretary-general for the Visayas; Bascon as regional representative for Negros Island Region; Escalante as focal person for health; and Remollo as vice chairman.
Bascon said the President told them it doesn’t matter whether they join PDP-Laban or stay with their party as long as they work for the people.
Duterte also told them that his office is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and that they can tell him anything, Bascon added.