Grace Poe still our top choice, says NPC spokesperson
LESS than a day after members of the National People’s Coalition (NPC) met with Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, a spokesperson for the NPC said that Sen. Grace Poe remains the party’s top choice for President.
“She (Poe) remains to be a choice, a top choice of the party. We are very much in the belief that she is indeed qualified to run,” Quezon Rep. Mark Enverga, the NPC spokesperson, told the “Ugnayan sa Batasan” forum.
“The disqualification [cases] in the general perspective is not an issue for us,” said Enverga.
He said the Supreme Court (SC) justices voting 12 to 13 to temporarily restrain the Commission on Elections’ (Comelec) disqualification of Poe validated the claims of the Poe camp that the poll body had abused its authority in voiding Poe’s certificate of candidacy.
Enverga said the NPC was hopeful that the SC would hear all the evidence presented by Poe, unlike the Comelec which he claimed ignored some of Poe’s arguments.
“We would like the Filipino people to get a chance to really choose their presidential leader in the upcoming elections. The more choices, the better for the Filipino people. For us, we would just want everyone to be given a fair chance,” he said.
According to Enverga, the NPC would form a 15-member executive committee to examine and choose the common candidate for President and Vice President that the party would support. He said he was optimistic that the NPC would unite behind one candidate this year.
Duterte, one of Poe’s rivals, met with NPC members on Monday night to personally present his platform and discuss his plans to make these plans into reality. Duterte focused primarily on peace and order and eradicating corruption.
But Enverga said he could not gauge how NPC members felt about a Duterte presidency after their meeting.
“It was very difficult to get a sense of the impressions of our members, as far as Mayor Duterte is concerned. Probably, in the coming days, that would be the only time for us to really get a true feel from our members on what they think of Mayor Rodrigo Duterte,” he said.
Enverga said the NPC would make its choice based on the presidential candidate’s platform of government and his or her practical solutions to the country’s problems. He said integrity, economic savvy and public empathy where the main characteristics they were looking for.
Aside from Poe and Duterte, the NPC has also met with Liberal Party standard-bearer Mar Roxas and Vice President Jejomar Binay. Enverga said the NPC would likely come up with their choice before the official campaign period starts on Feb. 9.