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MANILA, Philippines - The Catholic charismatic movement El Shaddai, widely perceived to vote as bloc, is set to announce its preferred list of senatorial candidates on Sunday, April 7.
"Ipinapaalam ng solidarity vote na nakikisang-ayon, para makita na may pagkakaisa ang mga Katoliko (The solidarity vote will show that Catholics are united)," a member of the clergy of the Diocese of Malolos who requested anonymity told Rappler.
The priest added that senatorial bets who supported the passing of the Reproductive Health Law are definitely not included in the list. He emphasized though that he was not privy on who and how many senatorial bets El Shaddai would be endorsing.
"Bumuo ng grupo (A group was formed) to scrutinize the candidates’ character," he said.
He asked Catholics to tune in to El Shaddai's prayer service in Quirino Grandstand tomorrow night, April 7, for the announcement aired over DWXI 1314.
Founded by television evangelist Mike Velarde, El Shaddai has roughly 5 million members.
Previously published reports however quoting professor Edna Co of the University of the Philippines' National College for Public Administration and Governance said the Catholic church, under which El Shaddai falls, has no tradition of bloc voting unlike the Iglesia ni Cristo (INC).
Some segments of the Catholic Church like the Bacolod diocese have tried to demonstrate their influence over elections by coming out with their "Team Patay" list of candidates who voted for the passage of the RH bill. They are endorsing anti-RH law candidates who were classified as part of "Team Buhay."
Whether or not these endorsements will have any impact on the outcome of elections this May remains to be seen. - Rappler.com
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