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41 govs led by Evardone back Bong Go’s VP bid

October 5, 2021 Ryan Ponce Pacpaco 656 views

AT least 41 governors led by Eastern Samar Gov. Ben Evardone on Tuesday pledged to campaign hard for the victory of Sen. Bong Go in the vice presidential race in next year’s poll.

In a statement sent to House reporters, Evardone, Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) vice president for Visayas and former congressman of Eastern Samar, said they assured Go of the full backing of their group after he filed his certificate of candidacy (COC) for vice president in the 2022 presidential polls.

“We, provincial governors, crossing party lines, support the candidacy for vice president of Sen. Bong Go and vow to campaign tirelessly for his election to the country’s second highest elective position,” the group said

As a long-time close aide to then Davao City mayor and now President Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte, they said Sen. Bong Go has gained wide and valuable insights on and has had to confront problems relating to both local and national governance.

“Such experience has prepared him adequately for elective public office – as senator and hopefully as vice president. Having come from the ranks of local public servants, we have no doubt that Bong Go understands the issues we face 24/7 in our respective provinces,” according to them.

“In the short period of only more than two years that he has been a senator, Bong Go has institutionalized the Malasakit Center, a project he and President Duterte started before the former presidential aide joined the Senate. Bong Go is the principal author of Republic Act (RA) No. 11463, or the Malasakit Centers Act of 2019,” they said.

The governors said the senator from Mindanao has made affordable healthcare accessible to Filipinos through the Malasakit Center, which is a one-stop shop for medical and financial assistance several government agencies allocate for the sick, who now have to go to just one office instead of laboriously seeking help from one agency to another.

There are now at least 138 Malasakit Centers in public hospitals throughout the country. These centers serve hundreds of sick poor Filipinos every day.

“Bong Go recalls of how he thought of establishing the one-stop shop for medical and financial aid. Sabi ko, bakit natin papahirapan ang ating kapwa Pilipino, eh sa totoo lang po, pera nila ‘yan. Dapat po ibalik sa kanila sa pamamagitan ng mabilis, maayos at may malasakit na serbisyo. That is the brand of service Filipinos can expect from him,” the governors stressed.

“With our support, if he is elected vice president, Bong Go promises to continue President Duterte’s programs, particularly his campaign against illegal drugs, criminality and corruption. These are some of the problems we continue to face as local officials, despite the administration’s gains in stamping out such nefarious activities,” they said.

The governors said Go also promised to pursue the President’s Build, Build, Build infrastructure program, which hastens economic development and provides jobs and income to our people in the country.

The governors who supported Go include Evardone, Eastern Samar; Edwin Ong, Northern Samar; Michael Tan, Samar; Dominic Petilla, Leyte; Damian Mercado, Southern Leyte; Roger Espina, Biliran; Dax Cua, Quirino; Jim S. Hataman Salliman, Basilan; Jose Alvarez, Palawan; Zaldy Villa, Siquijor; Imelda Dimaporo, Lanao del Norte; Edgar Tallado, Camarines Norte; Migz Villafuerte, Camarines Sur; Jose R Riano, Romblon; Dale B. Corvera, Agusan del Norte; Jun Ebdane, Zambales; Bonz Dolor, Oriental Mindoro; Nancy Catamco, Cotabato; Arthur Yap, Bohol; Wilter Palma, Zamboanga Sibugay; Melchor Diclas, Benguet; Roberto Y. Uy, Zamboanga del Norte; Oyie Umali, Nueva Ecija; Gwen Garcia, Cebu; Noel Degamo, Negros Oriental; Jurdin Jesus M. Romualdo, Camiguin; Presby Velasco, Marinduque; Gerardo A. Noveras, Aurora; Francisco Emmanuel “Pacoy” R. Ortega III; Maria Jocelyn Valera Bernos, Abra; Hermilando Mandanas, Batangas; Bonz Dolor, Oriental Mindoro; Al Francis Bichara, Albay; Jose Riano, Romblon; Joven Miraflores, Aklan; Ayik Pimentel, Surigao del Sur; Vic Yu, Zamboanga del Sur; Frank Matugas, Surigao del Norte; Abdusakur Tan, Sulu; Joseph Cua, Catanduanes; and Eduardo Gadiano, Occidental Mindoro.