THE newly formed Pagkakaisa ng Mga Pilipino Para sa Pilipinas (PPP), a political coalition between the Kilusang Bagong Lipunan (KBL) and the Partido ng Manggagawa at Magsasaka (PMM), will instead throw its support behind another presidential aspirant should Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. change his mind in running for President in the 2016 elections, a high-ranking official of the coalition said on Friday.
PMM president Jose Malvar Villegas said in case Marcos will not announce his presidential bid on September 27, the coalition will convene and choose one from those who are joining the race to Malacañang next year.
“We will choose whom to support from those who [will]have announced their candidacy by October 5,” Malvar told The Manila Times, referring to Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, former senator Panfilo Lacson, Rep. Roy Señeres of OFW party-list and other possible presidential candidates.
“Personally, I will choose from those who are expected to announce their presidential bid. I believe Duterte, Lacson and Seneres will announce their candidacy soon,” he said.
Villegas, however, clarified that the PMM will not endorse any of the three candidates who have already declared their intention to run for President.
“Personally, I am prone not to really endorse the three presidential candidates [former Interior secretary Manuel Roxas 2nd, Vice President Jejomar Binay and Sen. Grace Poe]. We will find someone other than the three who is worthy of our support,” he said.
Villegas added that it would run counter to his position as a lead petitioner against the controversial Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) and Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF), which were declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court (SC), if he endorsed the candidacy of Roxas.
“He [Roxas] is the candidate of the administration which propagated [DAP and PDAF],” he said.
Villegas added that he couldn’t support a presidential candidate who is involved in various anomalous transactions.
“I will be inconsistent with my opposition if I throw my support behind Binay who is now facing the most number of corruption cases,” he said.
“As one of the organizers of the Movement Against Dynasty, I will again be consistent against Binay because he personifies political dynasty in the Philippines,” Villegas added.
He said he also couldn’t endorse the candidacy of Poe, who is facing a disqualification case over residency and citizenship issues.
“She’s [Poe] an American [in]thoughts and words for years,” Villegas, a grandson of Filipino patriot Gen. Miguel Malvar, added.
“How can I support a candidate who is an American citizen?” he asked.
Malvar was the last Filipino general who surrendered to American forces during the Philippine-American War that began in 1899 and ended in 1902.
In case the PPP realizes that no presidential candidate deserves the coalition’s support, Villegas said, the party would concentrate on the Vice President, senators, congressmen and other local candidates.
Meanwhile, he expressed disappointment with Marcos’ recent statement denouncing the coalition for spreading “false information” on his announcement on his presidential bid in next year’s elections.
On Thursday, the senator for the second time denied reports that he will make an announcement about his plans for 2016 in Pangasinan on Sunday.
“If he’s [Marcos] not interested, so be it!” Villegas said.
“This is the first time I’ve seen a presidential candidate denouncing his own supporters and even calling it as a dirty trick,” he added.