The barangay chairmen of Olongapo City came in full force to welcome vice presidential candidate Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos, Jr. on Tuesday when his “Unity Caravan” visited the city.
Marcos was in Olongapo as one of the guest speakers in the launch of Radyo Inquirer’s Issues Forum, focusing on the country’s labor problems.
After the forum Marcos met with the barangay chairmen over lunch. All of the 17 barangay chairmen of the city were present in that meeting as well as Olongapo City Mayor Rolen Paulino.
“I am grateful that our barangay chairmen accepted our invitation to meet with them so I could not only listen to their concerns but also discuss my platform that I am presenting to our people as well as my campaign for national unity,” said Marcos.
Among others, Marcos discussed with the barangay chairmen his efforts in the Senate to promote the interest of local government units.
In particular, he reported to them the passage in the Upper Chamber of his Barangay Retirement Benefits Bill that provides monetary benefits from P100,000 to P50,000 to qualified elected barangay officials as well as barangay volunteer workers.
Marcos also expressed gratitude for the warm reception he received from city hall employees and city residents who besieged him to shake his hand or get a selfie with him when he arrived there to pay a courtesy call to Mayor Paulino.
“I am proud and honored to welcome our vice presidential candidate here in the city,” Mayor Paulino said for his closing remarks in the forum.
He likewise exhorted the city residents to be wise in voting for the candidates in the coming May elections.
“In your hands rest the future of our country. Please don’t make a mistake. We have committed mistakes in the past but we have the opportunity to correct those mistakes,” he said.
Marcos’ visit to Olongapo coincided with reports that he has surged ahead of his rivals for the vice presidential post according to the latest survey of Pulse Asia. Marcos believes his improving popularity rating means the people are receptive to his message of national unity.