BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
Despite supporting opposing presidential candidates in the May 9 elections, Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and Vice Gov. Jeffrey Ferrer yesterday re-affirmed their coalition, as the local campaign is slated to start March 25.
Lacson is supporting the presidential bid of Vice President Leni Robredo while Ferrer and 28 of 31 Negros Occidental mayors are rallying behind presidential candidates Ferdinand Marcos Jr.
With this situation, Lacson said “it is easy to sow intrigues.”
But we will not allow the presidential elections to break this coalition, Lacson stressed during a joint press conference with Ferrer at the Provincial Capitol Social Hall in Bacolod City.
Robredo and her running mate Senator Francis Pangilinan will have their proclamation and grand rally on March 11 at the Paglaum Sports Complex in Bacolod City, where organizers are expecting a huge crowd.
Ferrer said he respects the choice of presidential candidate being supported by Gov. Lacson.
“We know that he also respects my choice and that of the 28 mayors who signified their support for BBM (Marcos),” he added.
On the other hand, Lacson said he and Vice Gov. Ferrer “will just enjoy ourselves in this campaign period.” At the same time, he encouraged everybody to enjoy. “Every national candidate that comes here, and you are rooting for them, come out and enjoy,” Lacson said, as he likened the campaign to celebrating a festival.
Let’s show to the world that here in Negros Occidental, we can have different choices, but locally, we remain intact, he stressed.
Ferrer, who is affiliated with United Negros Alliance, and Lacson, who belongs to Love Negros, called on their respective supporters to continue supporting their tandem in the May 9 elections.
“We are making it clear that as far as the local coalition in the province is concerned, we remain is solid,” Lacson pointed out.
“Let us remember that the campaign period will just pass,” he stressed, adding that “here at the local level, we are together 24/7, 365 days a year.”
It is not easy to form a coalition. And so, we will not allow the national elections to break this local coalition,” Lacson said.
Lacson cited the 2016 elections where he ran for vice governor against Ferrer and won.
“That was among the most intense competition but we were together in 2019. It’s because of the way we respected each other in 2016,” he added.
To those who want to sow intrigues and cause division between us, Lacson said “here we are.” “Let them try,” he added.*