MANILA, Philippines – It was a busy Wednesday for the Commission on Elections (Comelec), as senatorial candidates from different political parties filed their certificates of candidacy (COC).
A total of 28 senatorial aspirants appeared before the Comelec office in Intramuros, Manila, on October 14, either in person or through a representative. (WATCH: Who filed their candidacy October 14, 2015)
They offered various platforms and legislative agenda, from food security and better programs on healthcare and education, to the strengthening of local government units and the empowerment of the middle class.
This brings to 53 total number of senatorial aspirants since Monday, along with 57 running for president and 11 for vice president.
Influx of senatorial aspirants
At least 5 of the senatorial bets are on the ruling Liberal Party (LP) coalition ticket, two each from the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) and Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC), and one from the Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (Lakas-CMD) party.
This will be former Akbayan party-list representative Risa Hontiveros’ 3rd try for a Senate seat. She will be running as a guest candidate under the LPs’ Daang Matuwid coalition.
Also running under the LP-led coalition are outgoing Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA) chief Mark Lapid, who resigned from his post Wednesday morning; former food security czar Francis Pangilinan; and re-electionist senators Ralph Recto and Franklin Drilon. Drilon’s brother filed the COC on his behalf.
In other news, Alma Moreno and Princess Jacel Kiram just filed their COCs as senatorial candidates of UNA. #PHvote— Mara Cepeda (@maracepeda) October 14, 2015
Former traffic czar and retired police official Romeo Maganto is also gunning for a Senate seat with the backing of the Lakas-CMD party. In a previous radio interview, he said he can solve Metro Manila traffic in one month.
Running under the banner of the Nationalist People’s Coalition are Valenzuela Representative Sherwin Gatchalian and incumbent Senator Vicente Sotto III, who topped the September SWS survey on senatorial preferences.
Outgoing Metropolitan Manila Development Authority chief Francis Tolentino – who withdrew from the LP slate over the “Playgirls” controversy – pushed through with his senatorial bid, running as an independen.
Meanwhile, former senator Juan Miguel Zubiri also filed his COC, running as a guest candidate of presidential race front runner Senator Grace Poe. He resigned as senator in 2011, and lost in the 2013 elections.
Another Poe supporter, Pasig Representative Roman Romulo, is running as an independent candidate.
Trillanes for VP, party-list nominations
Senator Antonio Trillanes IV on Wednesday became the second Nacionalista Party (NP) senator to file his COC for the vice presidency. Fellow NP senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr filed the previous day.
Banking on the support of military officers and socio-civic organization Samahang Magdalo, Trillanes said he plans to continue the fight against corruption if he wins the vice presidency.
Trillanes joins 3 other aspirants for vice president who filed on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, 20 people filed COCs for president on the same day.
A total of 42 party-list groups have filed certificates of nomination and acceptance for their nominees on Wednesday. This brings to 65 the total number of groups seeking to join the party-list race in 2016. – Michael Bueza, Katerina Francisco, and Jee Y. Geronimo/Rappler.com
Check out who are running for national and local positions:
LIST: Aspirants for 2016 elections