VP bet Tito Sotto ‘confident’ of Cebu 7th district’s support

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ALTHOUGH he was not formally endorsed by the mayors and Provincial Board members of the 7th district of Cebu who met him during his visit to Dumanjug town in southwest Cebu on Friday, April 29, 2022, vice presidential candidate and Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III was confident of their support in the elections.

He considered their attendance at the meeting tantamount to getting their support during the May 9, 2022 polls.

“I’m very happy. I’m very pleased with the attendance and the support that I’m getting from all of them. They gave me the commitment that all of them will be supporting me for the vice presidency,” Sotto said.

Sotto is the running mate of presidential aspirant Sen. Panfilo Lacson.

Sotto met with Rep. Peter John Calderon, Board Member Jerome Librando, mayors Fritz Lastimoso of Alcantara, Dean Singco of Ginatilan, Mariano Terence Blanco V of Ronda, Carmencita Lumain of Badian, Verna Magallon of Alegria, Efren “Gungun” Gica of Dumanjug, all of the seventh district; and Samboan Mayor Emerito Calderon Jr. of the second district, all members of One Cebu Party headed by Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia, except for Representative Calderon, who belongs to the Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC).

The Senate president said he was already assured of support from Representative Calderon and Mayor Gica of Dumanjug since they belong to one party, NPC.

Representative Calderon, however, refused to comment on whether he would support Sotto, saying his role during the meeting was only to gather the chief executives of the local government units in his district in order to hear Sotto’s programs once elected into office.

Gica also did not also formally endorse Sotto although they are party mates.

In a statement later in the day, however, NPC Secretary-General Dong Mendoza said: “I was there. I was present when Senate President Vicente Sotto III was endorsed by our party mates. They gave their word and commitment to our party chairman that he has their backing. I trust the words of our party mates and will count on their commitment.”

“Yes, election season is about winning. But aside from that, it is also about pushing ourselves up. It is about putting honor to our words and premium to our commitments. I believe that the meeting speaks volumes. There is no need to explain any further. What is clear cannot be muddied by intrigues and lies,” Mendoza added.

One Cebu Party has endorsed the vice presidential bid of Davao City Mayor and presidential daughter Sara Duterte-Carpio.

Brave plan

Sotto explained that if he and Lacson win in the May polls, they will implement the Budget Reform Advocacy for Village Empowerment (Brave) proposed by Lacson for local government units to get the much-needed funding for their key development projects.

Under the proposed bill, the provincial government would receive P1 billion annually, the city would get P200 million, the municipality P100 million and the barangay P5 million.

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