Zafra, Hontiveros to run as ‘independent’ candidates in 2022 polls?
CEBU CITY, Philippines — “Independent!”
Councilors Philip Zafra and Donaldo Hontiveros posted the same cryptic message on their social media accounts Friday night, September 3.
Zafra admitted to CDN Digital in an interview that he is now considering the possibility of leaving the administration group, Barug-PDP Laban, and become independent should be decide to seek reelection in the 2022 polls.
“I just want to focus more on the service and the people,” he said in a phone interview on Saturday, September 4.
But he clarified that he is not in conflict with any party members.
Zafra said that it was also a mere coincidence that he and Hontiveros made the same posts Friday night.
“Maybe parehas mig gihuna-huna pero wala mi nagsabot. Wala gyod mi nagkaestorya lately,” said Zafra.
(Maybe we just had the same thoughts but we did not agree on our posts. We have not been talking lately.)
As of this writing, Hontiveros is yet to comment on the matter.
The social media posts of the two administration councilors made netizens speculate if this was already an indication that Barug- PDP Laban, group that made Mayor Edgardo Labella and Vice Mayor Michal Rama win in the 2019 election, is now on the verge of breaking up because of an unresolved “internal feud.”
Zafara’s declaration of independence also came shortly after Councilor Raymond Garcia led the relaunch of Kugi Suwag Sugbu (KUSUG), the party that was started by his father and former mayor Alvin Garcia, and the launch of the PANAGHIUSA group of Metro Cebu Water District (MCWD) chairman Joey Daluz III.
Sources from Barug PDP-Laban said there is a possibility that Rama and Daluz would both seek election for mayor in the May 2022 elections.
But none of the two has made an official announcement about their election plans.
Councilor Garcia, for his part, has already announced that he was ready to run for vice mayor. But it was also unclear as to who is his mayoral candidate.
Zafra said the pandemic made him realize that he wanted to focus on serving the people devoid of the constraints of being a part of a political party.
He said there was also a need for unity to bring the city back on its feet and overcome this pandemic.
Service, Zafra said, should not be constrained by political alliances.
“Ang serbisyo dili mohunong sa pulitika,” he said.
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