LP Baguio breakup looms

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BAGUIO CITY May 06 – The ruling Liberal Party (LP) chapter in the city is on the verge of breaking up after most of its stalwarts during the 2010 and 2013 elections are expected to blot the party following disagreements on who among its members will be appointed to occupy the vacated 12th slot in the city council.

Vice Mayor Edison R. Bilog said the consensus among most of the LP Baguio chapter members was reached after their bet for city councillor Mark Go was not appointed by President Benigno Simeon C. Aquino III to occupy the vacant council seat that was created following the implementation of the law of succession after the untimely death of the late Vice Mayor Daniel Farinas last year.

“I was designated chairman of our group within the party and we would be conducting series of consultations among our ranks as well as make representations with the LP national leadership to make the city a free zone. If the LP leadership will refuse our proposal to make the city a free zone, we will definitely leave the party,” Bilog stressed.

It can be recalled that Bilog’s group recommended Go to takeover the vacant council seat while Rep. Nicasio M. Aliping, the LP Baguio chapter chairman, recommended former councillor Lilia G. Yaranon, wife of former City Mayor Braulio D. Yaranon, as his personal choice for the post which was the one eventually considered by the President.

Joining Bilog in the breakaway group are councillors Faustino Olowan and Isabelo Cosalan, Jr. as well as Go, losing mayoralty candidate Jose M. Molintas and other LP members who run under the administration party over the past several elections.

“We have been receiving many offers from other political parties but we are still weighing our potions,” Bilog added.

The rift within the LP Baguio chapter emanated from the different recommendations on who will be the party’s bet to occupy the vacant council post with Bilog’s group nominating Go while Aliping recommended Yaranon and city officials unanimously recommended Lilia Farinas, wife of the deceased vice mayor,.

Bilog said the long standing controversy within the party already casted doubts on the sincerity of the members to the leadership and had already caused their relationships to be strained, thus, the option for them to bolt out the party the soonest so they can build up their own network in time for next year’s elections.

The vice mayor asserted the need for the conduct of continuing consultations with local and national LP officials so that they will be able to establish a much stronger line-up for next year’s elections or bolt the party and regroup with another political party interested to accommodate them and their platforms of government for the city.

Vice Mayor Bilog claimed they simply stood on their conviction in nominating Go as the most qualified nominee for the then vacant council position because of his qualifications and experience and that the Aliping group made an offer to Go that the lawmaker will nominate him for the position if he will not run for congressman next year, citing that such condition should not be imposed on Go considering that the decision on who will be their candidate for various positions will be decided by the party members and not Aliping alone.

By Dexter A. See

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