Press Release
March 26, 2010

Villar bandwagon on a roll

Buoyed by the exodus to his party of members and allies of other political parties from Cebu and Mindanao, Nacionalista Party (NP) standard-bearer Manny Villar has expressed optimism that more would come out to support him in the weeks ahead.

Villar said shifting party alliances is normal during this time, especially with the start of the campaign period for local positions.

"As the forthcoming elections draw closer, local officials are beginning to make their choices on who to support in the national level," Villar stressed.

"This is very normal. It had happened in past elections, and it could happen again this May," said Villar during a talk with reporters late Wednesday night after a motorcade in Santiago City, Isabela.

Former Cebu City Mayor Alvin Garcia, who is seeking to reclaim the city's mayoralty, announced an alliance between his party Kugi Uswag Sugbo (Progress for Cebu) or Kusug and NP held at the Marco Polo Hotel in Cebu City.

Earlier, Bukidnon Gov. Jose Zubiri and majority of Bukidnon mayors also expressed their support to Villar.

Villar said more politicians, including those in the national level like senators and congressmen, could also join the bandwagon, explaining that many of them were his former colleagues in the House of Representatives where he was once the Speaker.

"Some of them became senators while the others are the House colleagues of Cynthia," he said, in reference to his wife Las Piñas Rep. Cynthia Villar.

But he pointed out that those wishing to join his camp are only welcome if they will share his advocacy to end poverty.

Earlier, a big number of local leaders from CARAGA or Region 13 also took oath as NP members before Villar who visited the region with his slate.

"We never convince them to join. What we ask of them is their support, they don't necessarily have to join.

They can support as members of Lakas, Liberal or NPC," Villar said, "It will be the decision of their respective parties whether or not they would be expelled," he added.

Villar also denied that he was giving campaign funds to politicians who are joining the NP.

Such reports, he said, are old gimmicks, "Yan ang usong-uso ngayon at sinasabi ng lahat ng aking kalaban. Pag merong sasali, sasabihin binili. Yan ay lumang tugtugin na."

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