MANILA, Philippines – The National Unity Party (NUP) has invited the 3 declared presidential candidates – Vice President Jejomar Binay, Senator Grace Poe, and Manuel Roxas II – to attend its party convention in Pasay City on Monday, September 28.
Cavite Representative Elpidio Barzaga Jr, NUP vice president for external affairs, said around 400 members are expected to attend Monday’s event, wherein party officials would be elected.
NUP, established by former supporters of former president now Pampanga Representative Gloria Arroyo, is a member of the administration coalition, together with the Liberal Party, the Nationalist People’s Coalition, and the Nacionalista Party. The NUP, NPC, and the NP have yet to announce the candidates they would support in 2016.
But in August, Barzaga said it would “only be a matter of time” before NUP endorses Roxas as its presidential bet. The NPC and the NP, however, seem to be heading to a different path, as the two parties are apparently set to support either Poe or Binay.
Barzaga said they are inviting the 3 presidential candidates to help them decide. While the formal invitation is expected within the week, Barzaga said he already invited Roxas, Davao Representative Anton Lagdameo is tasked to talk to Poe, while Deputy Speaker Roberto Puno is set to talk to the vice president.
“Right now, we don’t have official candidates. As a matter of fact, some are for Sec Mar, there are some for Jojo Binay, and even some for Grace Poe. It’s too early to decide now; they are not official candidates yet until they file their Certificates of Candidacy,” Barzaga told Rappler on Tuesday, September 22.
Each of the 3 candidates would have an hour to talk before NUP and would not be asked any questions. The first one to speak according to Barzaga is Poe, followed by Binay, then Roxas.
Barzaga said the party would decide by October, as they would also consider the candidate’s running mate, senatorial slate, and platforms.
Only 3 candidates have declared their intention to run for president, while only Senator Francis Escudero has so far announced his vice presidential bid. – Rappler.com