Leni-Kiko tandem backed by Bicol mayors; Iloilo governor vows support

Published October 28, 2021, 3:19 PM

by Raymund Antonio

More local government officials are throwing their support to Vice President Leni Robredo and her running mate Senator Kiko Pangilinan, the latest are the mayors from Robredo’s home region of Bicol and a governor in Iloilo.

Albayanons wave pink flags and ribbons in front of their houses while Vice Leni Robredo passes by along the roads of Ligao and Tabaco, Albay on Oct. 28. This is the second day of her visit to her home region of Bicol. (OVP)

The campaign of Robredo and Pangilinan for the upcoming elections focuses on “bringing back good governance that prioritizes the welfare of the people,” especially providing livelihood and healthcare amid the pandemic.

Among the Bicol mayors backing the Leni-Kiko ticket are Labo, Camarines Norte Mayor Joseph Ascutia and Tabaco, Albay Mayor Krisel Lagman.

The local officials’ support came on the heels of the volunteer-driven caravan that showed immense grassroots support for their candidacies. They believe the two are the “epitome ng (of) good governance and ethical leadership.”

“Ako po ay sumusuporta sa tandem ni (I support the tandem of) Vice President Leni Robredo at ni (and) Senator Kiko Pangilinan. Sila po ang nakikita ko na isang tandem na talagang makapagbabago ng klase ng pamumulitika dito po sa atin sa Pilipinas (I see them as the tandem that can really change the system of politics here in the Philippines),” Ascutia said, adding that their tandem will serve the country well.

For Lagman, the Vice President has shown her “ability, sincerity, and determination” to help the people especially those on the fringes of society, and it is the same with Pangilinan.

READ: Local support for Robredo swells

She said that when it comes to service and experience, no one can deny what Pangilinan has done. She encouraged her constituents to trust Pangilinan the way they trust Robredo.

Meanwhile, Iloilo Gov. Arthur Defensor Jr. also publicly voiced out his support, not endorsement yet, of Robredo because of her sincerity to help the country.

He has campaigned for her during the presidential elections in 2016 when Defensor was still a member of the once-ruling Liberal Party. Iloilo is a known bailiwick of LP because it is Senator Franklin Drilon’s hometown.

Defensor, who transferred from LP to PDP-Laban and to the National Unity Party (NUP), spent his last term in the House of Representatives with Robredo.

Lagman said that everyone knows Robredo was part of a non-government organization (NGO) before she was pushed to join politics, though that didn’t stop her from fulfilling her role.

READ: Local support for Leni-Kiko tandem snowballs

She recalled that Robredo’s arrival the day after super typhoon Rolly brought extensive damage to the city in November 2022 showed her love and sincerity for the people, particularly her concern for the fisherfolk of San Miguel Island who lost their boats.

The fisherfolk’s association later received two motorized boats from the Office of the Vice President (OVP).

Ascutia first met Robredo as a member of the Kaya Natin Movement for Good Governance and Ethical Leadership, where he shared the Vice President’s advocacy.

In Bicol this week, Robredo is set to meet with Lagman and Ascutia, other Bicol political leaders including Albay 1st District Rep. Edcel Lagman, Sorsogon Gov. and senatorial candidate Chiz Escudero, and Albay Gov. Al Francis Bichara, among others.