Tupas files COC for Iloilo vice governor; wife runs for vacated post
ILOILO CITY—In a surprise move, Iloilo Rep. Niel Tupas Jr., a close ally of President Benigno Aquino III in the Liberal Party (LP), is running for vice governor of Iloilo.
Tupas, who is serving his third and last term as representative of Iloilo’s 5th congressional district, filed his certificate of candidacy (COC) about 9 a.m. Thursday.
His wife and chief of staff, Angeli Lee-Tupas, also filed her COC to run for her husband’s former post.
Tupas’ move ended speculations on the possible running mate of Iloilo Gov. Arthur Defensor who is seeking re-election.
The Tupas and Garin families who are part of the ruling coalition in the province have been jockeying to field family members as LP’s vice gubernatorial candidate.
There were earlier talks that the congressman’s father and namesake, former Iloilo governor Niel Tupas, or one of his siblings could run for vice governor.
Vice Gov. Raul Tupas, younger brother of the congressman, will not be seeking re-election but will run for representative of the 5th district against his sister-in-law.
The vice governor earlier bolted the LP and joined the Nationalist People’s Coalition.
He said he felt “abandoned” by the LP when the party chose Angeli Lee-Tupas to run for the Congress post.
Several members of the Tupas family are also currently holding elective positions including brothers Nielex (councilor of Iloilo City), Nielo (provincial board member) and Niel III (mayor of Barotac Viejo town).
Former governor Niel Tupas also served three terms as congressman before being elected governor, also for three terms. CDG
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.