MANILA, Philippines - A new political group calling itself the Centrist Democratic Party of the Philippines (CDPP) has endorsed the senatorial bid of presidential cousin Paulo Benigno “Bam” Aquino.
Aquino, who was flattered by the endorsement, is running under the banner of the Liberal Party-led coalition.
The new political party also adopted two other members of the administration team, Senators Francis Escudero and Aquilino Pimentel III, as its guest candidates.
Aquino likened the new party to the anti-Marcos protest during martial law, which he said started small but eventually snowballed to become the 1986 EDSA Revolution that ended the dictatorship.
“I am sure you will soon become a big political party,” he told the new political group, which is only less than a month old, having registered with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) only last Sept. 12.
CDPP elected Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus Rodriguez as its president and former local government undersecretary Lito Lorenzana as chairman. Among its national council members is former University of the Philippines president Jose Abueva.
“We have 74 candidates for various positions and three guest senatorial candidates. We already have 9, 600 members. That’s a good start, considering that we are a very young political party,” Rodriguez said, adding there are a lot of things that distinguish them from other political groups.
“We are a year-round political party, conducting orientation seminars and leadership training among our members and recruits. We are the only party whose members pay annual dues of P1,000 each. We espouse a centrist democratic ideology,” he said.