Last update: November 28 2009, 11:56 PM

Valenzuela, Parañaque bets file CoCs

November 28, 2009

MANILA, Philippines—With the deadline for filing certificates of candidacy (CoC) fast approaching, more and more Metro Manila candidates have trooped to the Commission on Elections to formally declare their intentions of running for political posts next year.

Valenzuela Mayor Sherwin Gatchalian filed his certificate of candidacy yesterday to seek reelection for the city’s top post. Gatchalian has been mayor of the city since 2004.

He will be running under the Nationalist People’s Coalition party, as he did in the past elections. His ticket for the 2010 elections, however, will include non-NPC members who have allied with him on the local level.

According to him, his ticket will include Valenzuela Councilor Shalani Soledad, girlfriend of Liberal Party standard bearer Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, and incumbent Vice Mayor Eric Martinez.

Soledad and Martinez are recent recruits of the Liberal Party recently who allied themselves with Gatchalian on the local level last year.

Gatchalian told Inquirer he was running for another term as he still plans to accomplish many things in Valenzuela.

“We still have a lot of flagship projects that we have not yet completed,” he said.

Among these are the construction of two emergency hospitals in the city, as well as the expansion of the existing Valenzuela General Hospital, he said.

With only a few days left before the deadline for the filing of CoCs on Dec. 1, no other candidate has come forward to run against Gatchalian.

Meanwhile, in Parañaque City, an actor is hoping for a comeback in politics while a former vice governor of Laguna province has changed course and filed his certificate of candidacy in Parañaque City.

Actor Anjo Yllana and former Laguna Vice Gov. Edwin Olivarez filed their CoCs at the Commission on Elections under one ticket called Grand United People’s Opposition on Saturday afternoon. They were accompanied by 16 other candidates for city councilors.

Rep. Ed Zialcita, who is running for mayor, chose Yllana as his vice mayor and Olivarez as congressman of Paranaque’s 1st district. Zialcita is running against reelectionist Mayor Florencio Bernabe who filed his CoC on Thursday.

Zialcita said he picked Yllana because “his record was untarnished and he has risen from the ranks.”

Asked if the actor’s popularity would boost his campaign, he said: “Yes, absolutely.”

Yllana was a councilor from 1998 to 2004 before he became vice mayor from 2004 to 2007. He lost the vice mayoral race in the 2007 elections.

Olivarez, owner of a school and hospital in Parañaque, said he would run in the city to give way to former Sen. Joey Lina who is reportedly running for Laguna governor.

In a phone interview, Olivarez said that in the past few months, community leaders in the city had been prodding him to run since Zialcita is set to leave Congress to run for mayor.

Olivarez, son of former Parañaque Mayor Pablo Olivarez, ran for Laguna governor but lost to Gov. Teresita Lazaro in 2007.

The family of Olivarez is also involved in real estate and condominium projects in Parañnaque City, Tagaytay City and Laguna.

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