Both Cebu Governor Gwen Garcia and her daughter, Liloan town Mayor Christina Garcia-Frasco, on Saturday refuted claims that the One Cebu party is already endorsing Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. as its presidential bet for the May 2022 elections.
In an interview with reporters, the Garcia matriarch pointed out that it is “too early” to endorse Marcos Jr. or any presidential candidate at this point.
“As you can see in the national scene, things are still so fluid. That is why One Cebu never jumped into the fray while others did, declaring too early their allegiances only to find out that such allegiances became irrelevant,” Garcia told the media.
Garcia earlier said, however, that One Cebu party will reveal its presidential candidate after 15 November.
Cebu, the country’s most vote-rich province, has some 3.2 million registered voters.
During the 2016 presidential elections, then-Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte had a margin of 1.1 million votes from then-presidential candidate Mar Roxas — a result attributed to One Cebu party’s backing.
Garcia’s clarification came after her daughter said 44 municipal mayors in Cebu will endorse the tandem of Marcos and vice-presidential aspirant Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio during her speech at the recent League of Municipalities of the Philippines (LMP).
Garcia-Frasco serves as the LMP-Cebu Chapter President and concurrently Duterte-Carpio’s spokesperson.
In a text message to Daily Tribune, Garcia-Frasco clarified that she expressed her support to Marcos’ presidential bid in her own capacity as the Cebu chapter president.
“My declaration of support for the presidency of Sen. Bongbong Marcos, I said in my capacity as President of the League of Municipalities of the Philippines Cebu whose membership consists of 44 municipalities,” she said.
“I fully respect the process of One Cebu Party, which has yet to give its endorsement to a Presidential candidate. With deference to the leadership of One Cebu, my hope is that the BBM-Sara Uniteam would be given serious consideration,” she added.
Marcos’ Partido Federal ng Pilipinas (PFP) and Duterte-Carpio’s Lakas-CMD have recently joined forces to formalize their partnership for next year’s polls.
The presidential daughter is the chairperson of Lakas-CMD and regional party Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HnP).
Earlier this week, PFP, Lakas-CMD, and HnP formed an alliance with Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP) and called their coalition “The Uniteam Alliance.”
Lakas-CMD and PMP have produced three Philippine presidents.
PMP helped actor-turned-politician Joseph Estrada win the 1992 vice-presidential and 1998 presidential elections while Lakas-CMD became the vehicle for the presidential bids of Fidel Ramos in 1992 and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in 2004.
The four political parties forged an alliance to back the tandem of Marcos and Duterte-Carpio for the upcoming polls.
Ramos founded the Lakas-CMD party and was a key personality in the 1986 People Power Revolution that ousted Bongbong’s father, the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos Sr.