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Bacolod City, Philippines Wednesday, July 11, 2012
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More mayors supporting guv,
others waiting for ECJ stand


More mayors of Negros Occidental have signified their support for Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr.’s bid for reelection in 2013, EB Magalona Mayor David Lacson, president of Negros Association of Chief Executives, said yesterday.

But Lacson said he will reveal the names at a later date.

Eighteen of 31 mayors have expressed their support for the governor, who is the chairman of the United Negros Alliance, Lacson said. Seventeen of the 18 had gathered at the governor’s office at the Capitol Monday, while La Castellana Mayor Alberto Nicor Jr. was not present as he was celebrating his birthday, the media were told.

UNA is a coalition of political leaders in Negros Occidental who are members of various national parties.

The show of support for the governor came amid claims that Ambassador Eduardo C. Cojuangco, UNA founder, wants Vice Gov. Genaro Alvarez Jr. to be the coalition’s candidate for governor in 2013.

Cojuangco, however, has not issued any public statement on the matter.

Alvarez said the usual selection process for UNA candidates for governor and congressmen of Negros Occidental is made at a top level meeting presided by Cojuangco.

That meeting is usually attended by the congressmen and governor, he said, adding that he will abide by the decision of the UNA leadership.

Pulupandan Mayor Magdaleno Peña, who was not at the meeting at the governor’s office Monday, said “he will follow the orders of Ambassador Cojuangco; after all, he is the founder and guiding spirit of UNA.”

Rep. Mercedes Alvarez (Neg. Occ., 6th District), daughter of the vice governor, said she could not comment on the meeting of the mayors at the governor’s office on Monday as she was not invited to it.

She said the mayors of the sixth district were also not invited to the gathering.

Marañon said he was surprised that all those mayors showed up at his office, adding he was unaware of their plan.

Rep. Alvarez said “as far as I know, the candidates for next year’s election will be decided by all UNA members, represented by the six UNA congressmen together with Cojuangco.”*CPG

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