'BOPK leaders'now for Guardo - Cebu Circle | Cebu City, Philippines

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Monday, May 3, 2010

'BOPK leaders'now for Guardo

04/03/2010 - CEBU, Philippines - In the elections, you can lose or gain allies with the bat of an eyelash. In this case, Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña, who is seeking the congressional seat in the South District, lost allies due to health concerns.

Businessman Jonathan Guardo, Osmeña’s main opponent for the congressional seat, yesterday announced that more supporters of Osmeña have already shifted their support to his camp.
In a press conference, Guardo presented to the media the 15 incumbent and former barangay officials and some sitio leaders from district, all of them claiming to be former allies of the administration’s Bando Osmeña Pundok-Kauswagan (BOPK), but said they had decided to withdraw their support to the group.

Their main reason of bolting from the BOPK camp is the mayor’s health condition, because according to them they want that their district representative to fully represent them in Congress for the whole three-year term of office.

“Wala ra ba g’yod ko kadungog nga dunay masakiton og cancer nga molungtad og dugay. Ang kagaw sa cancer igo lang mopahuway tungod sa chemotherapy pero mobalik ra gihapon kini paglabay sa pipila ka buwan,” said former Mambaling councilman Eddie Abellana.

Abellana cited the case of then President Corazon Aquino, mother of presidential hopeful Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, and former senator Renato Cayetano, who died of cancer months after they underwent surgery.

The 61-year-old mayor had surgery at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas in 2008 where his urinary bladder was removed.

Crisanto Dayonot, the president of Senior Citizens Association in barangay Mambaling, said “Ang gusto nako mao nga ang atong congressman kanang dili masakiton.

Guardo said he received feelers that there will be more BOPK-allied barangay officials, including barangay captains, who will abandon their group within this week.

Tom Unfazed

But Osmeña said he is not afraid that there are few BOPK supporters who shifted their support to his opponent.

“Miresulta na g’yod ang kwarta nila ni Villar ug Winston nga gisuporta ngadto ni Guardo,” Osmeña said, referring to presidential aspirant Manuel “Manny” Villar and Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) president Winston Garcia, who he said are supporting Guardo’s financial needs.

Former Pasil barangay councilman Ronnie Abejo said he shifted his support to Guardo because he observed that the latter is really serious of his intention to serve the public.

He observed that even after Guardo lost to Congressman Antonio Cuenco in the 2007 elections, but the former mayor’s sports consultant still continued giving any kind of assistance to the poor constituents, including the giving of free caskets to indigent families.

Inayawan barangay councilman Jerome Jaca said he has decided to sever his ties with Osmeña because the mayor did not help him and his fellow candidates in the barangay elections in 2007.

But Osmeña denied it saying “No, gitabangan nako ang tanan nga akong mga supporters. Pero wala ko mahadlok nga dunay mobiya kay mosuporta sa akong kontra tungod sa kwarta.”

The other former BOPK supporters, who shifted support to Guardo are Babag barangay councilmen Nardo Gabisay and Letecia Tapia, Inayawan councilman Rodrigo Ocampo, Esterlita Gabutan, leader of women’s group in Guadalupe, Alfonso Caballes, vice president of Split Banawa-Englis Movement, Bianca Mondares, youth leader in Buhisan, and Buhisan’s gender and development officer Marilou Rodila.

Others are Rey Kintanar, former Lupon member of Cogon-Pardo, Vergel Ong, youth leader of Basak-San Nicolas and Ester Baguio, a relative of Guadalupe barangay captain Eugenio “Jingjing” Faelnar.

Osmeña said some of those persons who were presented by Guardo yesterday are not his supporters (Freeman)

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