Three former councilors of Bacolod City might run for the same post under the Grupo Progreso of the Nationalist People’s Coalition.
Bacolod Vice Mayor Jude Thaddeus Sayson, Grupo Progreso and NPC mayoralty bet, yesterday said they have invited former Councilors Alex Paglomutan, Greg Gasataya and Celia Flor to join the party and they have responded favorably to the invitation.
But he also said he would like to give them the opportunity to make the declaration.
They will be joining the five incumbent councilors who are seeking re-election, namely, Em Ang, Caesar Distrito, Carlos Jose Lopez, Mona Dia Jardin and Roberto Rojas.
Sayson said the track records of these former officials speak for themselves, and even if they have been out of public office for two years, they never stopped serving the people.
Gasataya is currently a director of the Bacolod City Water District, while Flor is active in work involving Gender and Development.
Paglomutan, meanwhile, has continued his public service as a broadcaster.
On the possibility that the “First Five” composed of Councilors Archie Baribar, Sonya Verdeflor, El Cid Familiaran, Catalino Alisbo and Elmer Sy will join the NPC slate, Sayson said there are no concrete developments yet on the matter, although he is personally and officially on good terms with them.
He said the candidates for positions of congressman, mayor and vice mayor will be decided by the NPC.
Sayson also said there is an on going coalition at the national level among the NPC-LP and Nacionalista Party, which might have an effect on the local level.
The NPC hierarchy has a directive that there will be a final coalition slate that they should consider, he said. They will also take up their meeting on the coalition and how it is going to affect their slate, he added.
On the other hand, Baribar said he will attend the meeting of the Liberal Party on Saturday to discuss their line-up for Bacolod City together with his party mates.
Baribar, together with Verdeflor, Familiaran, Alisbo and Sy, have been sworn in as new members of the Liberal Party last month.
Baribar, who is eyeing the vice mayoralty post, said they might be able to finalize their political positions during the meeting on Saturday before the filing of the Certificates of Candidacy on October 1 to 5.
“For now, nothing is final and practically, nothing is definite,” he said.
LP Bacolod chairman Frank Carbon said they have continuous negotiations for the vice mayoralty candidate and are open to former Vice Mayor Renecito Novero and businessman Vladimir Gonzalez. They are also considering Baribar for the position of vice mayor, he said in an interview over ABS-CBN yesterday.
However, Carbon said the choice for vice mayor will depend on the mayoralty candidate because normally it is the mayor who will choose his running mate. The choice will also depend on the party they will coalise with, he said.
Carbon said they will present their line-up on the third week of this month.
Baribar said their communication lines with Puentevella are open and he hopes it will not be shortened, speculating that Puentevella’s choice for vice mayor would be businessman Vladimir Gonzalez instead of him.
Whatever his decision and that of the party, will be supported by his party mates as they are all boarding in one boat, he said.*CGS