THE Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) will field official candidates for local positions for the 2019 midterm elections.
This was agreed during the PDP-Laban leadership assembly at the GSIS Financial Center on Roxas Boulevard on Aug 31, 2018, according to Iloilo City lone district Rep. Jerry Treñas.
In an interview with The Daily Guardian on Air over Aksyon Radyo on Sept 1, Treñas said the assembly was attended by congressmen, governors, vice governors, mayors, vice mayors, and several cabinet secretaries, among others.
It was led by Pres. Rodrigo Duterte and concluded around 2 a.m. the next day.
“It was discussed that PDP-Laban will have its candidates in the local level,” Treñas said.
He added that the official list would be announced soon as it is barely less than a month before the filing of certificates of candidacy (COCs) on Oct 1-5.
“The party will be issuing a certificate of nomination and acceptance for the official candidates in the different congressional districts, provinces, municipalities, and cities,” he said.
Treñas also shrugged off the possibility of a “free zone” policy in the local level after the PDP-Laban formed coalitions with other parties.
“At the local level I think what will happen is that the PDP-Laban will field a candidate while the coalition party will also have its own. Indi man siguro sona libre kay magsiling ka sona libre waay official candidate ang partido,” he added.
For Iloilo City, Treñas has already announced his plan to return as mayor. He will face his brother-in-law and incumbent City Mayor Jose Espinosa III.
Espinosa is with the Nacionalista Party (NP).
In Iloilo province, third district Rep. Arthur “Toto” Defensor Jr. of PDP-Laban is running against fourth district Rep. Ferjenel Biron of NP.
NP is an ally party of the PDP-Laban.
But the coalition will only apply in the senatorial slate, Treñas said.
The ruling party earlier released a list of 22 candidates that will possibly compose the party’s senatorial slate for the coalition.
The slate is comprised of all parties supportive of the President such as the Laban ng Demokratikong Pilipino (LDP), NP, National Unity Party (NUP), and the Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC).
It also includes some cabinet secretaries and PDP-Laban members who might run for senator such as Special Assistant to the President (SAP), Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque; Presidential political adviser Francis Tolentino; Quirino Rep. Dakila Carlo Cua; and Davao City 1st district Rep. Karlo Nograles, among others.
As to the purported internal rift in PDP-Laban, Treñas assured that Pres. Duterte recognized the blocs of former Senate President Koko Pimentel and former House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez as the legitimate party leaders.