BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
Cadiz City Mayor Salvador Escalante Jr. revealed yesterday that the Escalante clan is supporting Vice President Leni Robredo during the May 9 elections.
Escalante also indicated that he is “leaning towards (Vice President) Leni (Robredo).” At the same time, he also revealed of his support to the vice-presidential bid of Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio.
While he did not vote for the elder Duterte during the 2016 presidential elections, Escalante said that the present administration has contributed a lot to the development of Cadiz City in terms of big infrastructure projects.
He also confirmed that Rep. Rafael Leo Cueva (2nd district Negros Occ) and Sagay City Mayor Alfredo Marañon III will go for VP Leni. “I don’t want to abandon my elders in politics, such as Mayor Thirdie,” Escalante said.
While he admitted that his cousin, Manapla Mayor Manuel Escalante, attended the meeting between Negros Occidental mayors and Marcos Jr, it was not because of BBM, but because of PGMA (former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, “as he is very close to her.”
During the BBM-Sara proclamation rally in Bacolod City, Escalante said he also sent delegates from Cadiz City.
With the arrival of VP Leni reportedly on March 11, Escalante said he is willing to host the Vice President in Cadiz City if she wants.
“Cadiz is an open city” he further said, adding that presidential candidate Isko Moreno is also arriving in Cadiz City, either on March 16 or 17, for a pocket rally.
Only city mayors of Cadiz, Sagay and Sipalay did not attend the meeting with Marcos Jrarranged by stanch BBM supporter, Vice Gov. Jeffrey Ferrer.
Ferrer, however, clarified that Sipalay City Vice Mayor Oscar Montilla and Vice Mayor Narwin Javelosa, who is unopposed in the Sagay City mayoral race, attended the meeting.
Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson earlier declared that he will support the presidential bid of Robredo.
Escalante also sent out to media a photo of him with the late DILG Secretary Jessie Robredo with the caption “Friendship beyond politics.”
“Jessie is one of my political mentors. One of the reasons why I’m leaning towards Leni”. “But first I have to meet her and this March 11 will be my chance to do so,” he added.
As agreed by United Negros Alliance members, Escalante said that UNegA will not have a common presidential and vice-presidential candidate, to avoid possible conflict.
UNegA will remain a provincial party, he said.*