Lakas-Kampi members optimistic and jubilant, says Claudio

June 2, 2009 1:28 pm 

MANILA, June 2 — Political Affairs Adviser Gabriel Claudio today belied reports that some members of the newly-merged Lakas-Kampi CMD party are getting unhappy and now planning to join the Liberal Party.

“As far as I know, the mood of the Lakas-Kampi members is very active, jubilant and after the successful merger there are some presidential wannabes in the opposition who are doing some piracy and raiding within the Lakas-Kampi especially in the municipal level,” said Claudio during his regular briefing with Palace reporters.

“We are doing our own check on this. The reports must be referring to some congressmen who belong to the other factions of the Liberal Party. I don’t think this is a matter that pertains to the Lakas-Kampi organization,” Claudio said.

This is hardly the time for Lakas Kampi members to even doubt their membership in the newly merged party, he declared.

On the possibility of including Sen. Richard Gordon to the list of possible standard bearers for the Lakas-Kampi, Claudio said Gordon has organized or is associated with a new party, Bagumbayan. He said he does not know what the intent of the party is in relation to the administration. "He said Senator Gordon must be made to clarify what his position is in relation to the administration. He has many friends in the Lakas-Kampi and we acknowledge his many contributions in the field of legislation. He was once a member of the Cabinet and there is goodwill between the administration and Senator Gordon,” he added.

On Senator Manuel Villar Jr. still topping the Social Weather Station (SWS) survey of presidentiables despite the C5 road controversy being investigated in the Senate, Claudio said, "Villar himself commented that we should wait for the next surveys so we will know the median or the average.”

“Still, we congratulate it (Villar’s topping the charts). We can also understand why he is so happy about the results of the survey but we do not know what will happen with the current developments in the Senate,” Claudio said.

He said the survey was conducted a year before the elections and “Anything can happen between now and the elections. Things are very fluid. We know very well how flexible the political cycle can become. So in the next survey it is important for us to see what will be the results of recent developments in the Senate hearings on the C5 road project and by the Lakas Kampi merger and even interpersonal relationships among the presidentiables."

On Defense Secretary Gilberto Teodoro being at the tailend of the charts, Claudio said he is personally disappointed about the ratings. “I want to see his ratings higher. I don’t think it is a reflection on the capability of Secretary Teodoro. Be that as it may we are not in a position to question the integrity of the survey. All I could say is that the survey is done a good one year before the elections and he has every time and opportunity to change that. He has the vision, determination, time and resources to make his policies and achievements known by the public for a more positive appreciation,” Claudio said.

He recalled that at the recent Leadership Forum at the Ateneo, the people he had spoken to had high praises for Secretary Teodoro and a lot of people were impressed by his presentation of performance and achievements.

Claudio said the same goes with presidentiables– Vice President Noli de Castro and Secretary Bayani Fernando (of the Metro Manila Development Authority, a member of the Cabinet and party stalwart of the erstwhile Lakas party).

"For Vice President Noli we are elated that he is still on top of the charts and we would like to think that this is in recognition of the good work he is doing in the Cabinet and as Vice President. He is able to project very well the image of caring and concern for the plight of the overseas workers and the poor people,” he said.

For Fernando, Claudio said he has as much time and effort to expose his achievements to the people especially in Metro Manila.

“A lot of people believe that he has made a great difference in the physical appearance, the attitudes and the way things are operated to make life a little more convenient in Metro Manila. We do wish that people will try to get to know him better,” Claudio said.

He said “it is a pity he did not grab the opportunity to expose himself to the party members at the merger of the party.” (PNA)

LAP/OPS/ssc

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