LUCENA CITY—The administration Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan party strengthened its mass base in Quezon province and pushed its promotion of federalism as it conducted a basic membership seminar and mass oathtaking at the Quezon Convention Center here.
Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre and House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez led PDP-Laban leaders as the party welcomed delegations of city, municipal and barangay officials from the 39 municipalities and two cities of the province along with 8,000 other participants from across Quezon.
Aguirre leads the PDP-Laban Quezon council as its president, with former Quezon governor Eduardo Rodriguez as second vice president. Other officials of the party’s provincial council are Atty. Giovanni Lim, first vice president; businessman Francis Dy, treasurer; Engr. Rodolfo Aguirre, assistant treasurer; businessman Alex Yu, auditor; San Narciso mayor Florabelle Uy-Yap, secretary general;
Dr. Pat Andaman, public relations officer; Kristine Aguirre-Adao, head, committee on membership; Michael Tañada, assistant head, committee on membership; Councilor Carlo Eleazar, head, committee on arbitration; PCA director Edicio dela Torre, head, committee on training and education; businessman Allan Yap, head, committee on finance; and Atty. Francis Sia, legal adviser.
Through a presentation, lawyer Raul Lambino, PDP-Laban secretary general, briefed the participants about how federalism will introduce real change in governance from a centralized unitary-presidential form to decentralized regional governments.
Lambino said there would be 11 states in the country “once the federal system is approved by the people,” and Quezon province will be under the regional state of Southern Tagalog.
Aguirre and Alvarez were accompanied by Reps. Karlo Nograles and Ace Barbers, former Metro Manila traffic boss Francis Tolentino, Quezon 1st District Rep. Trina Enverga and 3rd District Rep. Helen Tan.
San Narciso Mayor Florabelle Uy-Yap, secretary general of PDP-Laban Quezon council, cited Aguirre as the “unifying force” of the party in the province.
Lucena City Mayor Roderick Alcala and Lucban Mayor Celso Olivier Dator were among local officials who attended the event. Absent from the gathering were Quezon Gov. David “Jayjay” Suarez, House Minority Floor Leader and Quezon 3rd District Rep. Danilo Suarez, and 2nd District Rep. Vicente “Kulit” Alcala.
Governor Suarez is the provincial head of the National Unification Party, which joined forces with PDP-Laban last year in the campaign for federalism, while Rep. Alcala remains a Liberal Party member.
Ace Fernandez, one of the speakers at the Quezon council speakers’ bureau, said the participants need to undergo a comprehensive seminar on federalism and other party principles at the municipal and barangay level before they can be considered full-fledged members of the party.