By Joseph Pedrajas | Manila Bulletin
Presidential aspirant Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.’s bid to woo Negros Occidental, the province where he lost in the 2016 vice presidential race, seems fruitful after earning the endorsement of majority of its mayors, although it does not mean an automatic support from its voting population.
Moises Padilla town Mayor Ella Celestina Garcia-Yulo told reporters “more than 25” mayors expressed their support for Marcos and vice presidential candidate Sara Duterte-Carpio’s UniTeam alliance, considering the “show of force” given on Wednesday during their meeting.
Meanwhile, Negros Occidental 5th District Rep. Ma. Lourders Arroyo, sister-in-law of former President Arroyo who supports the tandem, said there were 29 mayors out of the province’s 32 localities who attended the meeting and expressed their backing.
All Negros Occidental’s six district representatives backed his candidacy, Arroyo added.
“It [the province] will be dominated by BBM-Sara,” said Garcia-Yulo.
This came after Marcos Jr. and Duterte-Carpio, along with former and current national government officials, met with the province’s local government officials before holding a six-hour caravan and rally that ended at around 9 p.m. Wednesday.,
Marcos Jr., once again, revolved around his call for unity during his campaign speech.
The Marcos camp said in a media release on Thursday that the presidential aspirant was “warmly” welcomed by the residents, who accepted their call for unity.
Meanwhile, a video that has gone viral on social media showed some residents shouting “Never again, never again,” which referred to the martial law that Marcos Jr.’s father, former president Ferdinand Marcos, imposed during his dictatorship.
“Alam ko ang ilan sa inyo matagal nag-antay kaya salamat sa pasensiya ninyo. Ngunit sa aking palagay ay ito ang inyong pahayag ng suporta sa adhikain ng UniTeam- ang adhikain ng pagkakaisa ng sambayanang Pilipinas (I know that many of you waited for us. But I believe, this only proves your support to our call for unity of the whole Philippines),” he said.
“Kapag pinagsama-sama natin ang galing, ang husay, ang sipag ng bawat mamayang Pilipino na kumakapit bisig at humaharap sa lahat ng hamon na dumadating, napakatibay ng Republika ng Pilipinas, napakatibay ng Pilipino (If we combine the talents and hard work of every Filipino fighting against all odds, we will have a strong republic, a strong Filipino people),” Marcos Jr. added.