Cebu exec vows 1-M vote for Gibo from province

PHILIPPINE NEWS SERVICE — Cebu province will deliver one-million votes to Lakas-Kampi CMD presidential candidate Gilberto “Gibo” Teodoro Jr. in next year’s elections.

The chief legal counsel of the influential Vice Mayors’ League of the Philippines, Carlos Fortuna, the vice-mayor of Mandaue, said that “Mandaue and Cebu can give Gibo one-million votes in the elections.”

“Our people like Gibo for his intelligence, integrity and leadership style,” said Fortuna following a visit, the second in as many weeks, by the ruling party standard-bearer to the country’s most populous province.

Last week, in Teodoro’s first visit to Cebu, his presidential bid was endorsed by One Cebu Party headed by Governor Gwendolyn Garcia, who said the former Defense Chief “is hands-down the best choice among the presidential frontrunners to lead the country.”

Garcia said Cebuanos see Teodoro—a bar topnotcher and a Harvard-trained lawyer—as the “most competent and qualified presidential bet” in the 2010 elections.

Garcia said further that Teodoro “best represents One Cebu Party’s ideals of competence and excellence in public service.”

Garcia pointed out that Teodoro typifies “intelligence in the service of the people” and will bring “governance that is not dictated by politics but politics dictated by good governance.”

One Cebu’s endorsement of Teodoro’s presidential candidacy represented a major political gain for the ruling party’s standard-bearer in this province, which gave President Arroyo a decisive edge in the closely contested 2004 presidential elections. Cebu has the most number of voters of the country’s 80 provinces.

The lady governor is a scion of the politically powerful Garcia clan, and her One Cebu Party wields the biggest political clout in the province.

The endorsement signified One Cebu Party’s “trust in the leadership of Secretary Teodoro and in his vision for the country” as it struggles to create jobs, provide quality education and health care, and adopt a comprehensive program amid the global climate change phenomenon.

For his part, Teodoro credited the governor’s leadership for making the province one of the best-performing provinces in the country.

He stressed that Cebu’s economic program under Garcia’s administration must continue as the province leads in the contribution to national development.

He said he was honored to receive One Cebu Party’s endorsement, saying it meant a lot to him in the new effort of Lakas-Kampi CMD, of which he is Chairman, to bring new politics and courageous political leadership to the party and the country.

Teodoro pledged to double his efforts in the other provinces to earn their trust similar to the support given him by One Cebu Party, which carries a slate of common candidates for entire province.