San Juan Mayor Guia Gomez, a partner of former president Joseph Estrada, on Monday bared a rift between her and Vice Mayor Francis Zamora, erstwhile political ally, whom she accused of spreading lies against her and the Estrada family and planning to run as mayor against her in 2016.
“It would have been better had you told me you wanted to run for mayor of San Juan. I would understand that. Each of us has the freedom to dream to becoming a leader.
(Mabuti pa kung ang sabihin mo ng tapatan na gusto mong maging Mayor. Maiintindihan ko ito. May kalayaan naman ang bawat isa na mangarap at ialay ang sarili na mamuno),” a teary-eyed Gomez said in a speech in front of city hall employees.
“Friendship should be beyond politics. I always considered them [Zamoras] as friends. I considered the Vice Mayor as a son,” she said, adding it was “painful” that the vice mayor’s father, House Minority leader Ronaldo Zamora, her friend for more than 30 years, never told her about his son’s political plans for 2016.
She said she was hurt by the alleged statement of Vice Mayor Zamora that the Ejercito-Estrada family had “unceremoniously dumped” the Zamoras to maintain their control over the local government and congressional seats of San Juan City.
“There is no truth to the charge (of Zamora) that the Ejercito-Estradas want to extend their hold on power up to 46 years (Ang paratang mo na gusto lamang ng mga Ejercito-Estrada na pahabain pa ang apanapu’t anim na pamumuno ay salat sa katotohanan),” Gomez said.
She recalled that Estrada was ousted as mayor during a people-backed military mutiny in 1986, which ousted former president Ferdinand Marcos and installed Mrs. Corazon
Aquino as head of a revolutionary government.
Estrada was out of office for six years, but returned as mayor of San Juan in 1992.
“The continuation of the Ejercito-Estrada clan in San Juan was made possible by the democratic will of the people who chose them as leaders in legitimate elections,” Gomez said.
The mayor was the campaign manager of Congressman Zamora when he ran for office in the past. Senators Jose “Jingoy” Estrada and JV Ejercito, sons of former president Estrada by former senator Loi and mayor Gomez, had supported Zamora at the time.
Vice Mayor Zamora said he will consult with San Juan residents if they want him to become mayor in 2016.