By Carmel Loise Matus | Inquirer.net
Members of the Kauswagan sa Norte (KSN) Party, who are also One Cebu’s allies in the fourth district, yesterday endorsed the candidacy of vice presidential bet and Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr.
Cebu Fourth District Rep. Benhur Salimbangon, KSN party president, said they proclaimed their support for Marcos twice – in Bantayan town on Bantayan Island and in Daanbantayan town in mainland Cebu.
“It is our KSN Party who made the decision,” he said in a text message to Cebu Daily News. KSN, a local political party formed in October last year, is allied with One Cebu and the National Unity Party (NUP).
One Cebu chairman and standard-bearer Winston Garcia was invited to the KSN rally in Daanbantayan as a guest, but arrived after Marcos had left.
In a statement, Marcos said he was hoping to get the endorsement of One Cebu.
He said he has been in talks with the Garcia-led party even before the latter announced that it has withdrawn support for Vice President Jejomar Binay and cut ties with the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA).
Garcia, however, said there are no talks between One Cebu and Marcos.
KSN was registered as a political party based on a resolution passed on Sept. 18 of last year by the Commission on Elections (Comelec).
Other KSN officials include Provincial Board (PB) member Sun Shimura as vice chairman, Bantayan Mayor Ian Escario as president, Tabuelan Mayor Rex Gerona as vice president, Medellin Mayor Ricardo Ramirez as secretary general, and Madridejos Mayor Salavador Dela Fuente as treasurer.
Marcos, in his second visit to Cebu this month, arrived in Bantayan at 9:30 a.m. yesterday on board a private chopper. A statement issued by the Marcos camp said nearly 2,000 gathered at the Bantayan Multi- Purpose Center to express their support.
Escario, also in a statement, said his family has long been supporters of the Marcos family.
“I am the third generation of Escarios. My grandparents and my parents have been loyal Marcos supporters. I told our people that if they trust me, we should all unite to support Sen. Bongbong Marcos for vice president,” he said.
Marcos, for his part, said the alliance of the Marcoses and the Escarios dates back to the time when his father, former president Ferdinand Marcos Sr., was first elected.
From Bantayan, Marcos accompanied by Salimbangon proceeded to Barangay Tapilon, Daanbantayan for another rally at 3 p.m. with mayoralty candidate and retired police official Vicente Loot.
Shimura, stepson of Loot, confirmed in a text message to CDN that his family is supporting Marcos. He said Marcos was his personal choice.
Marcos left Daanbantayan at 5 p.m. and returned to Manila.
During Marcos’ first visit to Cebu earlier this month, Cordova Mayor Adelino Sitoy also endorsed his candidacy while local candidates of PDP-Laban in Lapu-Lapu City led by mayoralty candidate Lando Patalinghug expressed their support.
Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, standard bearer of PDP Laban, is slated to visit Cebu on April 2 for a courtesy call and rally in Toledo City and a forum in Cebu City.