Ignacio Arroyo’s sister may run for vacant House seat
HINIGARAN, Negros Occidental—Former first gentleman Jose Miguel “Mike” Arroyo said here Monday he would endorse his sister, Marilou Arroyo Lesaca, should she decide to run for the congressional seat of their late brother, Representative Ignacio “Iggy” Arroyo.
Mike Arroyo, Lesaca, Iggy’s wife Alicia Rita “Aleli” Morales-Arroyo, his partner Grace Ibuna and daughters Bianca Arroyo, Dina Arroyo-Tantoco and Alelou Arroyo were at St. Mary Magdalene Church here Monday night having accompanied Iggy’s remains from Manila.
Mike Arroyo, in an interview, said he would support the candidacy of Lesaca for the fifth district seat of Negros Occidental, that includes this town, which Iggy represented in Congress.
Aleli Arroyo also said she would support a congressional bid by Lesaca, who had said she would have to consult the people of the district before making a decision.
Iggy’s term was to end in 2013. Speaker Feliciano Belmonte has said a special election may be called or another representative may be asked to fill the seat until then.
Ibuna said she did not want to think of politics because she was grieving, although she has reportedly been urged by some to run for the seat.
She would only say that if she did not run, she would support the one who would work for the people of the district with as much dedication, sincerity and love as Iggy.
Other names that have surfaced as possible congressional candidates are Binalbagan Mayor Alejandro Mirasol and Negros Occidental board members Melvin Ibañez and Emilio Yulo III.
Iggy’s remains arrived at the Bacolod Silay Airport after 6 p.m. Monday aboard a Philippine Airlines accompanied by Ibuna, her children and Iggy’s daughters Bianca and Dina with his first wife Marilyn Jacinto. Mike and Marilou arrived shortly after on a private plane.
Around 6,000 people, many carrying torches and in tears, lined a 200-meter stretch of the road leading to the church.
After Fr. Greg Patiño blessed Iggy’s remains in liturgical rites, local residents formed a single line as they filed past his coffin.
On Thursday, Iggy’s remains will be brought back to the Arroyo family home in La Vista, Quezon City. Burial is set for Friday at the Manila North cemetery.
In Manila, Ibuna’s lawyer Leonard de Vera said no one was barred from the wake and funeral of Iggy. With a report from Julie M. Aurelio
Originally posted: 7:57 pm | Tuesday, March 6th, 2012
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