GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/27 April)– President Benigno S. Aquino III embarked on a “house-to-house” campaign in an urban village here Saturday morning, making a strong push for the election bids of administration-backed local candidates and the Team Pnoy senatorial ticket.
This was the second visit of the President to campaign for the candidates belonging to the administration party in about two months, having been here last March 6.
Aquino, who arrived here late Friday, joined reelectionist Mayor Darlene Antonino-Custodio and other candidates of local coalition Liberal Party-Achievers with Integrity Movement (LP-AIM) in a campaign sortie in Barangay Labangal.
Labangal, which is considered as among the city’s vote-rich areas, is a known bailiwick of the People’s Champ Movement-United Nationalist Alliance (PCM-UNA) slate being backed by reelectionist Sarangani Rep. Emmanuel Pacquiao.
Pacquiao grew up and still maintains a house in the village.
The President said he personally joined the “house-to-house” sortie to help boost the bids of the local LP-AIM slate.
“Bakit ho tayo sumama na mag house-to-house? Dahil bilib ho tayo sa kandidato (Why did I join the house-to-house campaign? Because I believe in our candidates),” the President later said in a meeting with local leaders and the community at the city gymnasium in Barangay Lagao here.
During the brief sortie, he “interviewed” residents regarding their election preferences and tried to convince those who still have doubts about supporting the administration candidates.
“I asked them personally about their conditions and I’m quite happy that most of them are alright and hopeful about their future as well as our government,” he said.
During the gathering at the city gymnasium, which also served as the LP-AIM’s grand rally, the President endorsed anew all local candidates in this city, South Cotabato and Sarangani provinces who are running under the LP slate.
Among those endorsed were re-electionist South Cotabato (1st District) Rep. Pedro Acharon Jr., South Cotabato gubernatorial candidate Daisy Avance-Fuentes and running mate Ernesto Catedral, South Cotabato second district congressional bet Ferdinand Hernandez and re-electionist Koronadal City Mayor Peter Miguel.
The President also endorsed the Team Pnoy senatorial candidates, which was only represented by Akbayan’s Risa Hontiveros.
Prior to the gathering, which was attended by around 8,000 LP-AIM supporters, the President inspected the ongoing development works for the P1.1 billion city circumferential road project.
The President, who also inspected the project during his visit last month, assured the full completion of the project by next year. (Allen V. Estabillo/MindaNews)