Cebu Gov Garcia quits Senate race–BinayBy Maila Ager
MANILA, Philippines – Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia will no longer run for the Senate in 2013, Vice President Jejomar Binay himself announced on Thursday.
“Hindi ho sya magpapatuloy ng kandidato sa senador [She will no longer pursue her senatorial bid],” Binay said in an interview in Cebu.
“Hindi ang dahilan e yung survey kung hindi ang dahilan ay kailangan magsamsa sama sila sa Cebu dahil hinahanap din siya sa Cebu [It's not because of the survey but the reason is they have to be here in Cebu, the people here are looking for her],” he said.
Binay defended Garcia’s decision, saying it was a “logical” move because the people need her more in the province.
He reiterated that Garcia’s withdrawal had nothing to do with her low standing in the surveys, saying it was still premature to say who will win or not in next year’s elections.
“Pwede rin naman syang miyembro ng Congress. Hindi porke mababa sya sa survey, napakaaga pa para malaman natin kung sino ang mananalo [She can also be a member of Congress. It's not because she is low in the survey. It's too early to say who will win],” the Vice President pointed out.
Garcia was among the first candidates named by the United Alliance (UNA), the new coalition formed between Binay’s PDP-Laban and former President Joseph Estrada’s Puwersa ng Masang Pilipino.
With Garcia’s withdrawal from the senatorial race, Binay said UNA would find another candidate to fill up its senatorial slate.
Among those reported part of the UNA ticket were Senators Gregorio Honasan, Loren Legarda, amd Francis “Chiz” Escudero, San Juan Representative JV Ejercito, Congressman Juan Ponce-Ernile Jr. former Senators Juan Miguel Zubiri, Ernesto Maceda and Richard Gordon, Congresswoman Milagros “Mitos’ Magsaysay, Joey de Venecia, and former MTRCB chairperson Grace Poe-Llamanzares.