MANILA, Philippines - President Aquino described as “very, very successful” the talks between the Liberal Party and the Nacionalista Party and the Nationalist People’s Coalition on the possibility of fielding a common senatorial lineup for the 2013 elections.
“I think the talks were very, very successful. But I will leave it up to our party president Mar Roxas to make the appropriate announcements... NP and NPC,” President Aquino told reporters.
A Philippine Star report said the NPC would have 2-3 slots in the common senatorial ticket, two of which would be filled by Senators Francis Escudero and Loren Legarda, who topped a recent survey on senatorial favorites.
Valenzuela City Mayor Sherwin Gatchalian would most likely get the third slot, a congressman-source said. Gatchalian’s brother Rex, a congressman, is one of NPC’s leaders in the House of Representatives.
The source said another three common candidates would come from the NP: Senators Alan Peter Cayetano and Antonio Trillanes IV, and Villar’s wife, former Las Piñas City Rep. Cynthia Villar.
He added that Villar’s party wants a fourth slot, possibly for former Surigao del Norte Rep. Robert Ace Barbers.
The congressman-source said the rest of the 12 to 13 senatorial slots would be reserved for the LP.
Aquino has publicly made known his desire for Aurora Rep. Juan Edgardo Angara and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority chief Joel Villanueva to be part of the administration ticket.
Angara, who belongs to Laban ng Demokratikong Pilipino, served as one of the spokespersons of the House panel that successfully prosecuted Corona in his recent impeachment trial.
Villanueva is a former congressman belonging to the party-list group Citizens Battle Against Corruption.
LP members whom the President reportedly wants to be in the common ticket are Customs Commissioner Ruffy Biazon and his deputy, Danilo Lim. Both had an unsuccessful senatorial run in 2010.
Another defeated senatorial candidate, Risa Hontiveros of the party-list group Akbayan, is also an Aquino-preferred nominee. With Philippine Star