Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose “Bong” Lacson filed his certificate of candidacy for a third and final term on Friday afternoon, October 1, at the provincial capitol social hall.
Lacson, leader of Love Negros and a member of the Nationalist People’s Coalition, filed his COC at the provincial capital social half, where provincial and congressional contenders will be filing their COCs until October 8.
Unity has been Lacson’s theme for a long time. After serving three terms (2001 to 2010) as mayor of San Carlos City at the northernmost tip of Negros Occidental, he won the 2013 vice gubernatorial race in 2013. His principal, then vice-governor Genario Alvarez, lost to the incumbent Governor Alfredo G. Marañon Jr.
Lacson maintained good relations with Marañon, refusing to challenge the older politician even when he fielded someone against Lacson, following failed reunification talks.
Lacson’s patience paid off. Vice Governor Jeffrey Ferrer, his opponent in 2016, has joined him forging a unity coalition. Both politicians have said the move will allow for swifter implementation of projects and programs in the province. It also means fewer unwieldy contests, Lacson said, making the province a sweet spot for politicians gunning for national polls.
Both have been accused, however, of trying to interfere in Bacolod City’s mayoralty race by pushing the candidacy of Alfredo Abelardo “Albee” Benitez, former third district representative.
Lacson and Ferrer led 28 of 30 mayors in the province to back Benitez’s run. Bacolod city officials have charged that local government units around the province have been trucking out of town residents to transfer and vote in Bacolod for Benitez. – Rappler.com