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Visayan bloc head bolts LP

Paolo Romero (Associated Press) - October 16, 2015 - 10:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Liberal Party in the Visayas may be headed for a split or could be hit by defections after one of its top leaders left the party to run as an independent in the 2016 elections.

Negros Occidental Rep. Alfredo Benitez, leader of the Visayan bloc in the House of Representative, filed yesterday his certificate of candidacy for re-election as an independent, which meant he has resigned as LP head of the region.

Prior to his leaving the LP, Benitez had lamented that he was being harassed by some top party leaders for allegedly supporting the presidential candidacy of Sen. Grace Poe.

The LP presidential bet is former interior secretary Manuel Roxas II.

Benitez said top LP leaders fielded opponents against his mayors who are not only party mates but also supportive of the Aquino administration since 2010.

“I was informed that my mayors have opponents fielded by LP. It is only right that I stay with them, that I stand by them. To be running under LP means that I am siding with their opponents — something that I cannot and will not do. They are my people and I am their leader,” Benitez said.

He admitted he has differences with party leaders, but he remains open to supporting Roxas, with whom he reportedly had a falling out.

He said there is no quarrel between him and Roxas but there are matters that need to be sorted out.

“We have not spoken for months although I had the chance to talk to Tita Judy (Araneta Roxas) and Senate President (Franklin) Drilon,” Benitez said, referring to the LP presidential candidate’s mother. – With Christina Mendez, Edu Punay

 

 

 

 

ACIRC ALFREDO BENITEZ ARANETA ROXAS BENITEZ EDU PUNAY GRACE POE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVE LIBERAL PARTY MANUEL ROXAS NEGROS OCCIDENTAL REP ROXAS
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