The Nationalist People’s Coalition party has withdrawn its nomination of Rep. Jeffrey Ferrer as its official congressional candidate in the fourth district of Negros Occidental, in the 2013 elections.
NPC president Frisco San Juan recently issued a certificate of withdrawal of the nomination of Ferrer as the party candidate for a congressional position in the fourth district, a copy of which was submitted yesterday to the provincial Comelec office in Bacolod City.
San Juan, however, did not state any reason for the withdrawal of the nomination of Ferrer, who would be on his third term as 4th district congressman, should he win in the election next year.
San Juan said that, effective Nov. 6, Ferrer ceased to be the official candidate of NPC.
Kabankalan City Mayor Isidro Zayco, NPC provincial chairman, yesterday confirmed the withdrawal of the nomination of Ferrer by the NPC national hierarchy.
Ferrer said he respects the decision of the NPC and also thanked former Ambassador Eduardo Cojuangco for his support while he was with the NPC for five to six years.
Aside from NPC, Ferrer also has the party nomination of United Negros Alliance.
On reports that he is supporting the reelection bid of Governor Alfredo Marañon Jr., who will be challenged by Vice-Governor Genaro Alvarez Jr. in the 2013 elections, Ferrer only said, “No regrets”.
Several mayors of Negros Occidental, who are NPC members, have also expressed support to Marañon, instead of Alvarez, who is the NPC gubernatorial bet.
Former Negros Occidental Board Member Ike Barredo is challenging Ferrer in the congressional race. He filed his certificate of candidacy as NPC-independent.
Alvarez, the NPC provincial vice-chairman, yesterday said the withdrawal of the certification of nomination of Ferrer may have been a decision of the NPC national leadership. “We can do nothing about it”, he said.
Not supporting the candidate of the party may be among the grounds for withdrawal of party nomination, Alvarez said.
Speculations are now circulating that NPC mayors who are not supporting Alvarez may suffer a similar fate as Ferrer.
Alvarez, however, said “I don’t think Mayor Zayco will go to the extent of withdrawing the certificate of nomination of NPC mayors (who are not supporting him).”
NPC is delegating the issuance of party nominations and withdrawals for the positions of vice-governor down to councilor to its provincial chairman.
Provincial Comelec supervisor Jessie Suarez yesterday said that it is not within the power of the Comelec to determine the reason behind the withdrawal of the certificate of nomination, stressing that it is the privilege of the party.
The function of the provincial Comelec office is merely to receive it and submit it to the Law Department for appropriate action, Suarez said.
Asked if NPC could transfer its certificate of nomination from Ferrer to Barredo, he said “it’s up to the party, and for the Comelec Law Department, which has the sole prerogative to resolve all election-related issues, to consider it.”
Suarez confirmed that Barredo filed his COC as a congressional candidate in the fourth district of Negros Occidental as NPC independent, without a certificate of nomination. So, he added, Barredo remains an independent candidate.
A FIRST IN THE PROVINCE
He also admitted that this was the first time in Negros Occidental that a withdrawal of nomination has been made by a political party.
Suarez, however, confirmed having received affidavits withdrawing the COCs and repudiation of nomination from 13 candidates in Negros Occidental, among them an NPC mayoral candidate and six NPC councilor-aspirants in the cities of Cadiz and Sagay.
Alvarez said he was not aware of these. As far as he is concerned, he said, they will present their formal line up of candidates in Sagay and Cadiz within this week.*GPB