MANILA — A CEO and president of a widely-popular and controversial direct-selling company on Thursday showed up at the Commission on Elections (Comelec) tent in Sofitel Hotel to file for the candidacy of a partylist group.
Sam Verzosa, top boss of Frontrow Philippines, is the first nominee of partylist "Tutok sa Win," a sectoral group which he said is geared towards providing aid to indigents.
"Nakatutok kami sa mahihirap lalo na sa urban areas, with more attention sa elderly at underprivileged youth... Asahan ninyo ang pagtutok namin sa kahirapan," Verzosa said in a speech following the filing of the partylist's certificate of nomination and acceptance (CONA).
According to Verzosa, he understands how it feels to be poor because he had a similar life growing up, before he co-founded Frontrow.
"Ngayon na nasa posisyon na ako para tumulong, I want to give back," Verzosa said.
The CEO added Tulong Sa Win has been organizing relief operations "for a long time" already.
The partylist's logo bore the signature "Win" design associated with variety show host Willie Revillame.
Asked what Revillame has to do with Tutok Sa Win, Verzosa said they have the same advocacy, and that the TV host supports them.
Based on Verzosa's Instagram profile, Maserati Philippines and Ferrari Philippines are also part of his business portfolio.
The partylist system was conceived as a means to empower the marginalized, under-represented sectors of society.
However, in the previous decades, political dynasties, billionaires, and other members of powerful clans have entered the into the system, with analysts and election experts calling for overhaul.