Sunday, March 28, 2010

Nerissa says she's dropping Teodoro and backing Villar

(The Freeman) Updated March 29, 2010 12:00 AM

Original Story:

CEBU, Philippines - Cebu Sixth District Rep. Nerissa Soon-Ruiz, who is running for mayor and her entire slate in Mandaue City, announced that they are supporting the presidential bid of Nacionalista Party standard bearer Manuel Villar, but remain loyal to One Cebu Party and will still support the candidacy of Governor Gwendolyn Garcia and her running mate Glenn Soco.

The announcement came after Villar met with five Cebu congressmen last week fuelling speculations that One Cebu will go for Villar instead of Lakas-Kampi-CMD standard bearer Gilberto “Gibo” Teodoro.

“That is expected. I already expected that,” said the unfazed Gov. Garcia when asked for a reaction on this latest political development in the province, which she has dubbed as “Gibo country”.

Soon-Ruiz said that after consultation with her leaders and political allies in Mandaue City, she realized that most, if not all of them would like to support a presidential bet that has the interest of our city in his heart.

She said that her leaders and political allies are clear about their choice and as the head of Nagkahiusang Mandauehanon, she agreed with them and they have reached a consensus.

“We have decided to support a presidential candidate that I am very confident will not turn his back on the people of Mandaue,” Soon-Ruiz said.

However, according to political observers in Mandaue, the decision of Soon-Ruiz and her allies stem from the governor’s penchant to play footsie with the camp of Mayor Jonas Cortes, who is supporting the candidacy of Liberal Party standard bearer Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino.

“Murag namangka sa duha ka barko, si Gwen kay samtang naa kuno siya gasuporta ni Nerissa, iya man sad giabi-abi si Jonas,” the political observer noted.

Soon-Ruiz explained that while serving in Congress for three terms, Villar and his wife Rep. Cynthia Villar were at one time or another a colleague and their working relationship assures her that Villar will be there for Mandaue when he becomes president.

She said that her platform is to provide 24/7 service to Mandauehanons, which is her higher commitment to the people of Mandaue and, if necessary may rise above partisan consideration.

The mayoralty candidate said that she wants the city to progress even surpass its neighbors because at this time we are lagging behind.

She contended that the city’s growth and development has stalled because the administration has no vision and the needed leadership to bring it to new heights.

“My working relationship with the Villars can assure Mandaue of national government support. This is a big political risk for me, but if this is what it takes to ensure that Mandaue will develop and progress in the next three years so be it,” Soon-Ruiz said in a press statement sent to The FREEMAN.

With this shift of support, Soon-Ruiz said that her local slate, with her as the head has tendered their resignation from Lakas-NUCD-CMD party yesterday.

She further said that they are ready to submit their courtesy resignation to Governor Garcia as members of One Cebu party to show our deep respect to her leadership.

“We believe that Gov. Garcia deserves another term as she has ably served the people of Cebu province for the last six years. Hence, we will continue to work hard and campaign to ensure the victory of Gov. Garcia and her running mate Glenn Soco in Mandaue,” Soon-Ruiz added.

The governor however assured that her personal relationship with the Ouanos will remain the same even if the daughter of former Mayor Thadeo Ouano, Emmarie is one of Soon-Ruiz candidates for councilor.

When asked as to how the shift of support will affect Teodoro’s winning in the presidency, the governor said, “One person cannot make a candidate win even myself. That’s why I am campaigning hard,” the governor added. — Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon/NLQ (THE FREEMAN)

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