LP, NPC not parting ways in 2013 polls, says lawmakerBy Leila B. Salaverria
Philippine Daily Inquirer
President Benigno Aquino’s Liberal Party (LP) and the Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC) are not parting ways in the 2013 elections.
Valenzuela Representative Rex Gatchalian, the NPC spokesperson, on Wednesday said his party was working out the details of its partnership with the ruling LP, and was intent on maintaining the coalition.
“We want to stress that the NPC is steadfast in its coalition with the LP for the upcoming 2013 midterm elections. In fact, talks are ongoing and we are already in the process of threshing out the finer details of the framework of our alliance,” Gatchalian said.
Gatchalian made the statement amid reports that the NPC was considering going at it alone in 2013 and bolting the LP-led coalition, which also includes the Nacionalista Party (NP), if the three parties are unable to resolve the contentious issue of their members running for the same posts.
The LP-NPC-NP coalition intends to field a common senatorial slate in next year’s polls. It is expected to go head to head with a rival coalition, the United Nationalist Alliance, which is led by Vice President Jejomar Binay.
According Senator Vicente Sotto III, the NPC wants the coalition to adopt the equity-of-the-incumbent principle and support the coalition members who are seeking reelection. If this principle is not observed at the local level, the NPC is prepared to make a solo bid in 2013, the senator said.
Gatchalian said Sotto may have been given the wrong information, or his words may have been taken out of context.
He insisted that the NPC remains supportive of the President’s leadership and vision.
“We believe that through this coalition, the NPC could be an effective partner of President Aquino and his administration in bringing progress, stability and peace to the country,” he said.
At the same time, he assured the NPC’s members that the party’s leaders were doing their best to protect their interests as they tackle the equity-of-the-incumbent issue with LP officials.
Earlier, LP officials said the NPC is benefiting from the fact that the President’s party is not able to accommodate all of the politicians wanting to join it.
Those who cannot be accommodated are moving to other parties like the NPC, which is considered a strong allied party of the LP, they noted.
An LP official said it was natural for politicians to want to join the President’s party in the run-up to the polls, but the LP just cannot accept everyone.