MANILA, Philippines—An undisclosed number of Manila-based media entities, including the Inquirer, failed to cover the Easter Sunday motorcade of independent senatorial candidates Bro. Eddie Villanueva and Puerto Princesa City Mayor Edward Hagedorn in Bulacan province.
Why? Because Villanueva’s media handlers forgot to tell them in advance about the event.
In a text message to this reporter, the Bangon Pilipinas party’s lone senatorial bet said he was “sorry” and had no idea why his media team “failed to inform you and the others.”
“We are in the middle of heavy traffic on MacArthur Highway between Bocaue and Balagtas” towns in Bulacan, reported Villanueva.
Their motorcade started around 6 a.m. in the municipality of Meycauayan. The leader of the Jesus is Lord church said at that time that they expected to reach San Miguel town around lunchtime on Sunday.
Malou Tiquia, a public relations practitioner handling Villanueva’s media concerns, promptly apologized for the oversight.
“It happens in a campaign that started late and with all the problems that attend to it. What can we do but just pick up the pieces and more forward,” she explained.
One of her staff promised to send a press release and accompanying motorcade photos later in the day.
Villanueva and Hagedorn earlier agreed to join forces to boost their chances of winning in next May’s midterm polls.
The evangelist finalized his alliance with Hagedorn during his recent visit to the Palawan capital.
In a statement, Villanueva said “Mayor Hagedorn and I have come up with an unwritten covenant to support each other’s senatorial campaign.”
“He is a long-time friend. He shares in principle my belief that no one should be left out of the country’s economic growth, which sits at the core of my advocacy of being the voice of the saguiguilid, or the country’s marginalized sectors, in the Senate…As part of our understanding, we will be jointly conducting certain provincial campaign sorties in Davao and Bulacan,” he noted.
The JIL church head has been pushing for his party platform, which he refers to as the “3Es,” short for “Economiyang Agresibo at Walang Napag-iiwanan, Edukasyon na Napapanahon at Entre-Pinoy na Masang Pilipino ang Nangunguna at Nakikinabang.”
After launching his senatorial bid on February 12 with a big rally at the Bulacan Provincial Capitol gymnasium in Malolos City, Villanueva conducted campaign sorties in various parts of Central Luzon; Southern Tagalog; Central Visayas; and Western, Northern and Southern Mindanao, among other regions nationwide.