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Ocampo, Maza share NP senatorial slate with Bongbong Marcos
In The Press Posted on December 14th, 2009.
Militant lawmakers Satur Ocampo and Liza Maza have finally agreed to become senatorial candidates of the Nacionalista Party (NP), sharing the slate with Ilocos Norte Representative Ferdinand “Bongbong" Marcos Jr.
Ocampo and Maza – critics of the Marcos administration – said they both joined the NP’s senatorial slate after the party’s talks with Kilusang Bagong Lipunan (KBL) fell through, they said in a press briefing at the Quezon City Sports Club.
KBL was established by the late president Ferdinand Marcos in 1978, becoming the predominant political party until 1986. Bongbong is the only son of the late president and former First Lady Imelda Marcos.
"We would like to announce our decision to join the senatorial ticket of the Nacionalista Party as adopted candidates for the 2010 elections" Ocampo and Maza said in a joint statement. “We likewise announce our support to Senators Manny Villar and Loren Legarda in their respective quests for the presidency and vice presidency."The two militant lawmakers said Villar was the only front runner who responded positively to their proposed platforms, which focus on the strengthening of agrarian reform, advancement of human rights, and combating graft and corruption, among others.
Ocampo and Maza made the announcement before hundreds of cheering supporters from Makabayan, a broad coalition of militant organizations nationwide with around 3 million members.
Villar and Legarda were present at the event.
Although the NP’s presidential bet acknowledged that talks between the party and Makabayan had not been smooth-sailing, he nevertheless said that in the end, their common advocacies for good governance, promotion of human rights, and the fight against poverty clinched the deal.
“’Pag di niyo naiintindihan bakit kami magkasama ng Makabayan, hindi niyo naiintindihan ang pinaglalabang ng Nacionalista Party," Villar said.
Legarda, a member of the Nationalist People’s Coalition who agreed to become Villar’s running mate last month, also welcomed Ocampo and Maza’s re-entry into the NP’s slate.
“Panahon po na magkaroon tayo ng lider na tunay na nakakaintindi ng problema ng bansa dahil sila po ay galing sa hirap," Legarda said, in apparent reference to Villar who is known for his rags-to-riches story.
NP and KBL’s dissolved alliance
Ocampo disclosed that he and Maza decided to join the NP slate because the party had cut its ties with the Marcos-founded KBL.
But he said that they would still discuss over the course of their looming campaign whether they would support the NP’s full slate, which includes Bongbong.
Maza said their issues with the Marcoses continue to be unresolved.
“Maganda sana ang pagkakataon na ito na makuha rin ni Bongbong ang pagkakataon na i-settle ang mga ganitong usapan," she said.
Ocampo said they have not personally talked to Bongbong about their candidacies.
The two militant lawmakers' initial plan to join the NP senatorial slate was dropped after Villar’s party coalesced with the KBL.
Last month, Ocampo and Maza filed their certificates of candidacies as independents, although they said they are not closing the doors to the NP. [See: Ocampo, Maza run as independents.
Internal conflicts within the KBL, however, eventually resulted in the collapse of its coalition with the NP. [See: NP junks alliance with KBL] - with Sophia Dedace/LBG/RJAB, Jr./RSJ, GMANews.TV