LP presidential bet gaining strong support, says Salceda

Albay Gobernor Joey S. Salceda

LEGAZPI CITY, Oct. 19 (PNA) -- Albay Governor Joey Sarte Salceda, Liberal Party (LP) provincial chairman in Albay, on Monday denied reports that LP members in the Visayas and Mindanao regions had bolted the administration party.

Salceda said the administration standard bearer is generating stronger support across the country though six months is still a long way to go before the presidential election.

He admitted though that some members of LP in Mindanao had jumped into another ship in the past few months.

“That happens when survey ranking is stagnant even though competitive. In Mindanao, it is an enigma because we expected that Mayor Rodrigo Duterte would declare, but he did not,” Salceda said.

Mindanao is the bailiwick of Duterte, according to the Albay governor.

But he said Roxas will continue to emerge as competitive among the presidential contenders.

“Six months is a long time in a presidential election with 54 million voters,” the Albay governor said.

The latest Social Weather Station (SWS) survey dated Sept. 20 showed that neophyte Senator Grace Poe continues to be the front runner in the presidential race for 2016 while Roxas was advancing to the second place.

Roxas dislodged Vice President Jejomar Binay who is now ranked third, from Rank No. 1 in the previous SWS surveys. Whoever wins in the 2016 presidential elections, the economist governor said, the next President in the country will be facing critical issues to be addressed -- specifically China’s bullying, aggravating the dispute over the West Philippine Sea.

“Our country is on the crossroad with local and international issues. The next elected President should deal persistently on West Philippine Sea -- which is a very critical issue, the senior high school, attainment of sustainable development goals and other concerns that need to look into,” he said.

Salceda, who served for three consecutive terms in the province's top position, will be running for the congressional seat in the second district of Albay under the LP.(PNA) LAP/PGL/FGS/RBB/CBD