Only Nationalist People’s Coalition candidates Bacolod Mayor Evelio Leonardia, Vice Mayor Jude Thaddeus Sayson and Greg Gasataya were on the stage with the Team PNoy during its grand rally at the Bacolod City Public Plaza last night.
Team PNoy campaign manager Senator Franklin Drilon reiterated his endorsement of Leonardia, Sayson and Gasataya for congressman, mayor and vice mayor, respectively, of the Liberal Party, Nationalista Party and NPC coalition.
Leonardia, on the other hand, thanked Drilon over and over again after the latter reiterated his endorsement during the rally at the plaza.
“We could not ask for more. This is an issue that we had taken up with the Grupo Progreso team and our councilor candidates know this. We are confident that on their own, they are strong and winnable and will definitely survive and succeed, even under circumstances like this,” he said.
Drilon’s endorsement is a decided advantage for them, Leonardia said.
“We saw his sincerity in helping us, inspite, maybe, of pressures and intrigues, and yet he has been consistent in his endorsement,” he said, adding that they will try to live up to the expectations of Team PNoy and President Aquino.
Leonardia also thanked the supporters of Grupo Progreso, who wore red shirts, for showing up at the rally and were able to turn the plaza into a “red sea.”
He said they are happy after being told that outside of the Plaza Miranda in Manila, this is the biggest attendance of candidates of the Team PNoy.
“The presence of Drilon, who is one of us, being an Ilonggo, has added a special flavor to the occasion. I am sure this will be a factor in the acceleration of their candidacy and that of the Team PNoy,” Leonardia said.
They are happy that they have made their contribution as their way of thanking the President for the great things he has done for the country, he said.
Leonardia said President Aquino has put the country in the right direction and the Philippines is now one of the fastest growing economies in Southeast Asia, second only to China.
He also said they support his programs and know that Bacolod has benefited from this unprecedented economic growth, he said.
“We feel this is the least that we can do to ensure that his plans and programs are pursued. That can only happen if he has senators in the upper chamber of the government,” Leonardia added.
Drilon was accompanied by Team PNoy senatorial candidates Jamby Madrigal, Ramon Magsaysay Jr., Juan Edgardo “Sonny” Angara, Cynthia Villar and Senators Aquilino Pimentel III and Loren Legarda.
Senatorial candidates Grace Poe was represented by her son Brian, Paolo Benigno “Bam” Aquino by his wife Kimi, Risa Hontiveros-Baraquel by Councilor Alex Paglumotan, and Senator Antonio Trillanes IV by Samahang Magdalo national president Gary Alejano.
The Bacolod LP candidates for councilor were earlier recognized during the launching of the Pamayanang Liberal-Bacolod City at the Pavilion Convention Center upon their arrival in Bacolod.
Also present at the rally were the councilor candidates of NPC Grupo Progreso who were provided seats in front of the stage.
Meanwhile, Magsaysay Jr. sustained a cut on his forehead when he tripped on the electrical cord of a projector behind the stage and was treated by first aiders of the city’s Patrol 117.*CGS