Luigi’s shift to LP ‘no loss’ – GarciaBy Carmel Loise Matus, Dale G. Israel
Cebu Daily News
Cebu 6th district Rep. Gabriel Luis “Luigi” Quisumbing is now an official member of the ruling Liberal Party (LP) of President Aquino.
He took his oath last night before Trade Secretary Mar Roxas in the LP headquarters in the Araneta Center in Quezon City along with officials from nine other provinces.
The party he left, One Cebu, downplayed his exit.
Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia avoided calling him a “loss.”
“As of now dili pa man ni panahon pa nga magkwenta ta hain plus, hain ang minus (Now is not the time to count where we gained or lost),” she said.
“That word is a very powerful word—loss—mura man ka ug nawad-an ug atay ana (It’s as if you’ve lost a liver).”
“This is a free country. Each of us is free to choose what would best suit our situation,” she said.
The first-term congressman is a grandson of business tycoon and philanthropist Norberto Quisumbing Jr., whose support is crucial in a campaign in the 6th district, which covers Mandaue City and towns of Cordova and Consolacion.
This leaves five Cebu province congressmen allied with One Cebu. Cebu City’s two congressmen belong to the Liberal Party. The lone district of Lapu-Lapu City is a member of Lakas-NUCD.
Luigi attended a four-hour Basic Orientation on Liberal Democracy (BOLD) for new recruits in the LP headquarters, said Gladys Santa Rita, director general of the LP national headquarters.
She said Quisumbing was with several other officials from nine provinces who also took their oaths of LP membership.
“We do not just let them take their oath unlike other parties. We let them undergo a process and part of it was the BOLD seminar,” Santa Rita told Cebu Daily News.
She said Quisumbing’s entry would further strengthen their party in Cebu.
“(For Cebu) It will also be helping the candidacy of Atty. Junjun Davide, the Liberal Party’s official candidate for governor in 2013,” she added.
Cebu Daily News tried to reach Quisumbing for comment but calls to his mobile phone were left unanswered
Rep. Pablo John Garcia, in a separate interview, said he understands the decision of the first-time congressman to join LP.
“The main reason for his transfer is to simplify things in the local level,” said Pablo John Garcia, secretary general of One Cebu.
He said this was what Quisumbing told them when he visited the Capitol two weeks ago.
The mayors of Mandaue City, Cordova and Consolacion in the 6th district belong to LP.
“I don’t think One Cebu has given him reasons to leave,” Pablo John said.
“The mayors are all from LP. I think it is to simplify matters in the locality.”
He said the Garcias and the Quisumbings remain friends.
“I do not relish the idea of campaigning against him. At the same time he also does not relish the idea of campaigning against me,” he told reporters.
“I still keep in touch with Luigi’s mother. Friendships are supposed to last beyond all other considerations especially political considerations,” he added.
“He is a young, energetic congressman. Alyado man gihapon (We are still allies),” he said.
“When it comes to Cebu, we are just one.”