Camotes mayors join Team Frasco; Bakud says ‘unfortunate but it’s reality’
CEBU CITY, Philippines – “It is unfortunate, but it is the political reality.”
Danao City Vice Mayor Ramon ‘Nito’ Durano III made this statement following the decision of several members of the Barug Alang sa Kauswagan ug Demokrasya (Bakud) to transfer to Team Frasco.
The camp of Team Frasco, political opponents of Bakud, announced on Tuesday, November 22 that some Bakud members have joined their fold.
These include the four mayors of Camotes Island, which is considered a Bakud stronghold in Cebu’s fifth district. They are Mayors Al Arquillano (San Francisco), Jojo Solante (Tudela), Edgar Rama (Poro), and Winky Santiago (Pilar).
The vice mayors of these municipalities also joined with their respective local chief executives in pledging allegiance with Team Frasco – Aly Arquillano (San Francisco), Erwin Yu (Tudela), Dina Rama (Poro), and Chiziline Maratas (Pilar).
The new members of Team Frasco took their oath before Rep. Duke Frasco (Cebu 5th District) last Monday, November 21, the party said in a press release issued on Tuesday.
“I am grateful as well to the newest members of Team Frasco who now join us in our cause to bring hope and change to the District after 70 years,” Frasco said, referring to his victory in 2019 when he was elected as the congressional representative for the 5th district.
Frasco’s win in the May 2019 elections was a major defeat to Bakud.
Tourism Secretary Christina Frasco and Liloan Mayor Aljew Frasco witnessed the oathtaking ceremony, the statement added.
Durano, for his part, said they respected their former party members’ decision to shift political alliances.
“We understand the circumstances and we do not harbor ill feelings toward defecting party members, partners, and friends,” Durano said in a separate statement.
The Bakud Emeritus Chairperson also said those who decided to transfer to Team Frasco notified their party about their plans.
In the meantime, Durano assured constituents in Cebu’s 5th District that they will continue to serve and work with them.
Bakud is led by the Durano clan, one of Cebu’s oldest and most influential political families.
Reporters also tried to reach out to the former Bakud members to ask why they moved to Team Frasco. Vice Mayor Aly Arquillano of San Francisco was the only one who responded as of this posting.
In a teleconference, Arquillano said he shifted to the opposing party for ‘the benefits and welfare of his constituents.’
Team Frasco’s new members are also set to take their oath as part of One Cebu, the Garcia-led political party, within this week, a source from the Capitol said.
Cebu’s 5th District consists of Danao City, and 10 municipalities – Borbon, Carmen, Catmon, Compostela, Liloan, Pilar, Poro, San Francisco, Sogod, and Tudela. /rcg
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