Lakas-Kampi-CMD to come out with shortlist of candidates on July 31

June 24, 2009 9:22 am 

By Lilybeth G. Ison

MANILA, June 24 — The merged administration party Lakas-Kampi-Christian Muslim Democrat (CMD) will be coming out with a shortlist of presidential, vice presidential and senatorial candidates for the May 2010 synchronized national and local elections on July 31.

Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita, president of Lakas-Kampi-CMD, in a press conference Wednesday after the first interim meeting of party officials, said members of the party's national executive committee discussed the guidelines/criteria on the selection of its standard bearer and other national and local bets that would be applied by the party in selecting its standard bearer to ensure victory in next year's polls.

"This historic meeting threshed out several issues on the selection of our national and local candidates next year and we have agreed on being guided by the fact that there's no substitute to victory in the May 2010 elections," he said.

Presidential political adviser Gabriel Claudio, secretary general of Lakas-Kampi-CMD, said the party is also expected to issue criteria for firming up its choice of standard bearer and other candidates, and establish party chapters down to the grassroots level in line with the party's concerted efforts to seal victory in next year's elections.

Claudio also announced the creation of a reconciliation and consolidation committee to be headed by former Rep. Prospero Pichay, which would come up with a mechanism to settle disputes and differences at the local level to pave the way "for the smooth determination of our candidates for local positions."

He said Pichay's committee will also be in charge of recommending the party's unified choices of candidates at the local level.

Claudio said the national executive committee will have until July 31 to evaluate and screen potential candidates to run under the Lakas-Kampi-CMD party.

"By and large, we had a very productive and constructive meeting of the national executive committee and we are looking forward to fasttracking the selection of candidates not only at the local but the national levels as well," he added.

Pichay projected the committee would encounter around 20-25 percent local disputes nationwide, mostly in the selection of candidates at the local levels.

"Definitely, there will be hard decisions to make but it's for the good of the party to ensure its victory in the coming elections," he said.

Pichay identified three areas that are considered to be having the most number of local disputes — La Union, Sorsogon, Surigao del Norte, among others.

He said the national executive committee is still to appoint members of the reconciliation and consolidation committee.

"Probably by next week, the national executive committee will be coming up with the complete members of the reconciliation and consolidation committee," he said.

Ermita assured that the national executive committee will have a clear view in the selection of candidates for the party.

But, he said it is still President Gloria Macapagal- Arroyo who will have the "last" say in the selection of candidates, being the Lakas-Kampi-CMD national chairperson.

Three names are being prominently mentioned to head the party's 2010 presidential ticket. Topping the list is Vice President Noli de Castro, followed by Defense Secretary Gilbert Teodoro. The third presidential aspirant is Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) chief Bayani Fernando, who was present during the the Lakas-Kampi-CMD national executive committee meeting.

De Castro has yet to decide if he would join the party or remain independent until the May 2010 election.

Ray Roquero, Lakas-Kampi-CMD deputy secretary general, said the party will have to decide if De Castro would be required to be a member of the party or can be adopted as guest candidate.

On the other hand, Teodoro, who has announced his plans to seek the presidency, will take his oath in the party after it has officially registered in the Commission on Elections (Comelec), he said. (PNA)



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