MANILA, Philippines – Team PNoy celebrates its victory in the recent elections and makes plans to sustain public support for 2016.
Natashya Gutierrez reports.
The sweet taste of victory.
This is what President Aquino and his senatorial slate Team PNoy celebrate on Wednesday, May 22 at Club Filipino.
It’s the same place where Aquino announced his coalition last October.
8 months later, they bask in their 9-3 win over the opposition UNA.
A relaxed Aquino mingles with his senators-elect and other Liberal Party stalwarts.
To the ruling LP, this is more than a win. It’s an affirmation of public support for the administration.
They are relying on their coalition partners to continue helping them with their reforms.
Negotiations begin immediately.
The next day, Senator Franklin Drilon announces the LP and their coalition partner Nacionalista Party, agreed to support a common candidate for the Senate Presidency.
Team PNoy’s campaign manager doesn’t admit he is the common choice, but sources all say Drilon is expected to be the next Senate President.
FRANKLIN DRILON, SENATOR OF THE PHILIPPINES: I met with Sen. Manny Villar, the president of the Nacionalista Party and the Nacionalista Party will stay with the coalition contrary to all these speculations. Sen. Villar assured us that the NP will continue to support the President and his legislative agenda in the Senate, that there will be a common candidate of the coalition in the Senate.
With a Senate President and a new majority in the Senate allied with the administration, the LP trusts it will be able to push for the reforms Aquino wants.
The goal is to sustain government’s popularity, so come 2016, voters will look to the candidate Aquino will endorse.
Interior Sec Mar Roxas’ name is floated, but it could be too early to tell.
BUTCH ABAD, BUDGET SECRETARY: Secretary Roxas himself said that what’s important is to make the administration of President Aquino successful so when the time comes that we have to find a replacement, the people won’t have a hard time to choose.
The LP is eyeing improvements in health and education, continued good governance and inclusive economic growth.
Will they successfully lay the groundwork for 2016?
The answer partly lies in the 16th Congress and whether after the victory party, newfound partners will keep their word.
Natashya Gutierrez, Rappler, Manila.