ROXAS CITY, Capiz: Top officials of the country, including President Benigno Aquino 3rd, and a handful of singers flew here for the kickoff of the presidential campaign of administration standard-bearer Manuel “Mar” Roxas 2nd but the loudest cheers were for the movie superhero Leon Guerrero played by Sen. Lito Lapid, an actor.
Lapid was introduced to the crowd of around 10,000 when his son, former Pampanga Gov. Mark Lapid, climbed to the stage to deliver a speech about his platform.
But before the younger Lapid was able to outline his plans if elected to the Senate, he greeted the crowd and called on his father who generously waved to the crowd.
His father is a two-term senator from 2004 to present but before he entered politics, he was a veteran action star known best as “Leon Guerrero” who fights for the rights of the oppressed.
The older Lapid’s movies often featured him doing super heroic deeds amid dire situations, including splitting a speeding bullet with his sword.
His remarkable feats in his movies clearly made a mark on the people here since the cheers were so loud even if Senator Lapid did not speak and was quick to give the floor to his son.
The younger Lapid then talked about investing in the tourism sector to create more jobs but the cheers were not as loud as those given to his father.
ButLito Lapid’s presence in Roxas’ proclamation rally was not the only crowd-pleaser.
Rock star Jett Pangan of The Dawn fired up the crowd with an opening number of Salamat (Thank You), while former network singing contest champions Frenchie Dy and Jonalyn Viray also sang nationalistic songs before the administration’s Senate bets were called to the stage one-by-one.
As for Roxas, he was cheered the most when he vowed to continue the Conditional Cash Transfer program, the government’s flagship program in fighting poverty by granting around P1,400 monthly cash assistance to the each of the poorest of the poor families, provided that they comply with conditions promoting human development goals.
The conditions include keeping each child in school, having regular check-up for expectant mothers in rural health care units, attending family development sessions and enlisting a child in deworming sessions, among others.
Roxas’ running mate and Camarines Sur Rep. Leni Robredo was a hit when she mentioned about her life story as a working mother who untimely lost her husband in an accident.
The story was featured in a TV show Maalaala mo Kaya, over the weekend.