Businessman Glenn Soco is on the shortlist of candidates of the local administration One Cebu party to be its vice governor candidate in 2013.
Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia confirmed this but said her brother and incoming gubernatorial candidate Rep. Pablo John Garcia of Cebu’s 3rd district should be given the liberty to choose his running mate.
Gwendolyn spoke during the launch of an anti-drug abuse program attended by mayors and barangay captains of Cebu at the Cebu International Convention Center (CICC).
In a previous Cebu Daily News interview, Soco said he told the party leadership of his interest to run a month ago.
“I have always been prepared to run. Even after the (2010) elections, nagpadayon ko og tuyok-tuyok sa province to continue the relationship that I have built,” he told CDN.
Vice Gov. Agnes Magpale sat next to PJ Garcia on stage with other provincial officals with no apparent trace of awkwardness.
“Tagad man…. Manggi-uwawon man gyud na si PJ (He took notice of me… PJ is a shy type of person),” she told reporters later.
Last week, news broke that she and the Durano-led Bakud party had finalized a coalition with the Liberal Party during a visit to Manila and that she would be the runningmate of Hilario “JunJun” Davide Jr. and not Garcia.
Flyers with the slogan “Padayonon Jud” (Push on or continue), a play on the congressman’s initials, were distributed to the audience. His track record was printed on the back.
“I’m no longer running for governor,” said Gwendolyn, “it’s Congressman PJ. Let’s give him the chance to make his own decision and weigh who he will field among the candidates.”
In a separate interview, Rep. Garcia said that he would consult leaders and officials of the One Cebu party, whose president is his eldest sister.
“I hope we have a consensus on whom to pick for vice governor,” he told reporters.
Provincial Board (PB) Member Thadeo Ouano said there were no discussions yet in the party about this.
Asked if he was available to run, Ouano said “depende” (It depends) but didn’t elaborate.
During the signing of the memorandum of agreement for the anti-dru campaign, Magpale was seated beside the congressman while Governor Garcia sat between Fr. Ernesto Javier, a trustee of the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. and her father, Deputy House Speaker Pablo Garcia. They occupied the stage with other provincial officials and representatives of RAFI.
In an interview, Pablo John said he conversed with Magpale, even asking about details of the activity and the composition of the anti-drug abuse commission.
Governor Garcia said the media cannot expect her and Magpale to snub each other.
“Sorry to disappoint you guys, we continue to be very professional in our dealings because we have responsibilities to each of our offices. I believe this is how people expect us to behave and how we conduct ourselves,” she said.
Still, Pablo John admitted that the new alliance between LP and Bakud has disturbed followers in the 5th district.
“It’s very difficult due to the relations with the mayors who have been with the governor. We have developed very deep friendships with these mayors. That is what causing the complications with the 5th district,” he told reporters. /Carmel Loise Matus, Correspondent