Press Release
April 19, 2010

20 top Romblon officials boost Villar backers

Sen. Manny Villar continues to dominate the ground wars in the coming elections as a total of 20 local officials and candidates in Romblon have crossed party lines in order to support the presidential aspirations of the Nacionalista Party (NP) standard-bearer.

The Romblon officials were led by incumbent Gov. Natalio F. Beltran who, along with Rep. Eleandro Jesus Madrona, had earlier shifted support from the administration party to the tandem of Villar and his running-mate Sen. Loren Legarda.

Beltran brought with him his running-mate Rolindo Perez, and 17 of his candidates for mayor in the 17 municipalities of Romblon.

The local officials were welcomed by Villar and Legarda at the party's office in Mandaluyong City yesterday. Beltran was accompanied by Perez, ten incumbent mayors gunning for reelection and seven mayoral candidates. Rep. Madrona was also present at the event.

The incumbent mayors are: Mayor Gerard S. Montojo of Romblon; Mayor Nicasio Ramos of Cajidiocan; Mayor Emmanuel F. Madrona of San Agustin; Mayor Ibarra Manzala of Magdiwang; Mayor Nanet Tansingco of San Fernando; Mayor Jory Faderanga of Banton; Mayor Asher Visca of Sta. Fe; Mayor Jason Fabila of Ferrol; Mayor Eddie Mazo of Corcuera and Mayor Filipino Tandog of San Jose.

The mayoral candidates who shifted support to NP are: Geminiano Galicia of San Andres; Leila Arboleda of Looc; Elmer Fortu of Calatrava; Roger Fodra of Odiongan; Adrian Feudo of Concepcion; and Artemio Madrid of Sta. Maria; and Eddie Lota of Alcantara.

Aside from these top local officials and candidates, a total of 17 bets for vice-mayor and 136 candidates for councilor in Romblon are also carrying the NP banner.

"We are confident that more and more of our local officials will shift support to the Nacionalista Party. With the rate of local officials supporting our slate, we predict V-Day on election day for the NP," Villar said.

The 20 Romblon leaders join the 81 political leaders in Lanao del Sur who hopped into the already swelling bandwagon of Villar and the NP last week. NP secretary-general Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano had earlier said more new recruits are expected to follow suit from key allies of both administration and opposition parties in the days to come.

In Mindanao, among those who shifted support to Villar and NP are Surigao del Norte Gov. Robert Ace Barbers, Gov. Cora Malanyaon and Rep. Nelson Dayanghirang of Davao Oriental and Gov. Douglas Cagas and Rep. Marc Cagas of Davao del Sur.

Barbers, a Lakas stalwart from CARAGA region, brought along with him several town mayors and local officials in taking their oath before Villar last year.

The more recent shift of support to NP include Gov. Jose Ma. Zubiri Jr. of Bukidnon; Malaybalay City Mayor Florencio Flores Jr.; Mayor Ernie Clarete of Plaridel, Misamis Occidental; former Lanao del Norte Rep. Tikbong Badelles;

Misamis Oriental Rep. Yevgeny Vincent Emano; Gov. Arturo Uy and Rep. Manuel "Way Kurat" Zamora of Compostela Valley; South Cotabato Gov. Daisy Fuentes; former Rep. Juan Domino; General Santos City Vice Mayor Florencia Congson;

Surigao City Mayor Alfonso Casurra; Surigao del Sur Rep. Florencio Garay; Bislig City Mayor Alberto Tan; Lanao del Sur Rep. Faysah Dumarpa; former Lanao del Sur Rep. Benasing Macarambon Jr.; former Marawi City Mayor Omar Ali Solitario; Maguindanao Rep. Didagen Dilangalen; and former Basilan Rep. and one-time House Deputy Speaker Abdulgani "Gerry" Salapuddin;

Zamboanga del Norte Representative Romeo Jalosjos; Zamboanga Rep. Erico Fabian; and world boxing champion Manny Pacquiao who is running for a congressional seat in Sarangani.

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