Mikey, aunt may not win congressional seats – Casiño
By Jess Diaz
The Philippine Star
MANILA, Philippines – Two Arroyos may not win congressional seats in the May 10 elections as party-list representatives, Bayan Muna Rep. Teodoro Casiño said yesterday.
He said he based his assessment on the March survey of Pulse Asia of public support for and awareness of the 187 party-list groups accredited by the Commission on Elections (Comelec).
“AGP or Ang Galing Party or Pinoy, and Ang Kasangga are not among the organizations enjoying enough public support to elect even one representative. In fact, they are not among the groups people are aware of,” he said.
Presidential son and Rep. Juan Miguel “Mikey” Arroyo of Pampanga’s second district is AGP’s first nominee, while aunt Maria Lourdes Tuason Arroyo is the incumbent representative and one of the nominees of Ang Kasangga.
Mikey has given way to his mother, President Arroyo, who is seeking to replace him in the House of Representatives.
AGP claims to represent security guards, while Ang Kasangga supposedly groups small entrepreneurs, including balut vendors.
To save the two Arroyos from losing their House seats, the ruling Lakas-Kampi has included their party-list groups in its nationwide campaign for votes.
Unlike the two Arroyos’ party-list groups, 1-Utak (United Transport Koalisyon) is enjoying enough support to send former Energy secretary Angelo Reyes to the House.
Reyes is 1-Utak’s first nominee. The group’s incumbent representative in Congress, lawyer Vigor Mendoza, has inexplicably given way to him.
Bayan Muna and other militant groups have filed disqualification cases against Mikey Arroyo and Reyes.
These organizations have blamed the Comelec and the Supreme Court for allowing dubious groups and administration fronts to “bastardize” and mock the party-list system.
According to Pulse Asia, only 10 of the 187 accredited party-list groups have sufficient voter following to elect two to three representatives.
These include Bayan Muna, Gabriela, Anakpawis, Akbayan, and An Waray.
The survey also showed that six in every 10 Filipinos are unaware of the party-list system.