BACOLOD CITY, Negros Occidental, Philippines – The tug of war for village chiefs has started in this highly-urbanized capital where the mayoral seat has become more hotly contested after former Third District Cong. Alfredo Abelardo “Albee” Benitez joined the political fray.
Less than a month after he was disavowed by sitting Mayor Evelio Leonardia, lone district Cong. Greg Gasataya has confirmed that 34 of the 61 village chiefs have swung their support for him.
The declaration came amid talks that Grupo Progreso, the local and dominant local party that Leonardia heads, might swing its support to a different congressional candidate.
Sources from various political camps and some independent candidates all point to one probable candidate who GP might support: Dan Atayde, a businessman who is a newcomer to Bacolod politics.
Gasataya’s camp claimed that aside from the 34 village chiefs, officially called punong barangays, 38 of 61 youth leaders who chair the Sangguniang Kabataan or youth council in their villages have also declared support for him.
“My heart is so full with their sincere show of support and love to me, and that came from my loyal friends and allies particularly, the 34 Punong Barangays who formidably represent their various constituents in the city,” he said in the news release.
Politics is only temporary, but our sincere relationship with a genuine love for public service is already instilled in our minds and hearts, Gasataya added.
“It’s a relationship founded on service they have forged long ago, which can stand beyond politics,” Gasataya also said.
He thanked them with all his heart for their continued confidence in him and for pledging their support until he achieved his aim to continue serving the people of Bacolod in his third and final term.
He urged them to continue working hand in hand with his office to ensure the smooth delivery of his brand of leadership formed on ‘Serbisyong may Puso’ to our beloved people of Bacolod.”
The release lists the following village chiefs to have expressed support for Gasataya:
Cesar Rellos (1), Bob Asan (3), Raymund Salaveria (5), Rudy Baydo (6); Hercy Sibug (7), Ronnie Serrano (9), Strong Bravo (10) Ely Alcantara (12) Karl John Magno (14), Felipe Rife (21), Diosdado Mayo (22), Joseph Ortillo (25), Jhun Mharby Orola (26), Edner Gigje (29), German Bullolaza (31), John Malayang (33),
Teodoro Yulo (34), Ruben James Miranda (35), Joemarie Biasca (36), Adrian Garrucho (37), Gener Agpalo (38), PB Jude Salusada (39), Elmer Villanueva (40),
Degie Tanista (Alangilan) Donny Dela Vega (Alijis), Angelito Abaring (Bata), Jojo Malayang (Cabug), Jerry Tingson (Estefania), Alfredo Talimodao (Granada), Ricardo Danoy (Handumanan), Rodolfo Pico (Mansilingan), Leah Palma (Punta Taytay) Rosinie Distrito (Singcang Airport), and Rodney Carmona (Sum-ag).