A group of clergy and another group of women mushroom growers, both from Gapan, Nueva Ecija, on April 25 raised the hands of Vice-President Leni Robredo and Sen. Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan in a show of force to quash any attempt to pitch a different vice-president for Robredo. PHOTOS COURTESY OF TEAM KIKO PANGILINAN
GAPAN, Nueva Ecija — A group of clergy and another group of women mushroom growers, both from here, on Monday evening raised the hands of Vice President Leni Robredo and Sen. Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan in a show of force to quash any attempt to pitch a different vice-president for Robredo.
Since the political campaign season started, this was the first time in the Team Robredo-Pangilinan (Tropa) political barnstorming that representatives from two different sectors jointly appeared on stage to endorse Robredo, Pangilinan, and the tandem’s senatorial candidates.
“Ang taumbayan ang magtataas nang kamay ni Vice President Leni at Senator Kiko dahil ang taumbayan ang magpapanalo sa labang ito. Taumbayan ang panalo sa labang ito,” a statement, read by the rally program emcee, said.
During the Monday evening rally in this city, 10 priests representing the clergy of Gapan went up the stage to join Robredo and Pangilinan and raised their hands.
“Kami pong lahat ay naririto upang ipakita ang aming buong suporta sa ating bise-presidente at Sen. Kiko Pangilinan. Kami po, Madam Leni, Sen. Kiko, ay taus-pusong nagpapasalamat dahil ang inyo pong hangarin ay nagbibigay nang inspirasyon sa aming mahihirap upang labanan ang hirap at gutom,” a representative of Gapan’s women mushroom growers told the tandem and the senatorial candidates.
Then, representatives of the mushroom growers raised the hands of Robredo and Pangilinan.
In a mid-morning rally in San Jose City public market, representatives of Kalasag, a farmers cooperative, endorsed Pangilinan by raising his hands.
The Kalasag farmers raising Pangilinan’s hands was reminiscent of the April 9 grand rally in Pampanga, where farmers from San Simon town declared their support by also raising his hands.
The emotional gesture by farmers from San Nicolas, San Simon, Pampanga was a rebuke to the move of several traditional politicians and political operators to break the tandem of Vice-President Leni Robredo and Pangilinan, and push for another vice-presidential bet.
Pangilinan thanked the Kalasag farmers and those who attended the rally, saying “tayo po pag pinalad, uunahin natin ang agrikultura sa San Jose City.”
Pangilinan said he has been cooperating with the Kalasag farmers since 2011.
“Bilang isa sa mga champions ng agrikultura nabigyan sila ng tulong at suporta,” he said.
The cooperation of Kalasag, his office, local government units, the private sector, and national government units have resulted in the increase of crop yield totalling 500 tons of onions in 2015.
“Pag nabigyan po tayo ng pagkakataon, gagawin po natin iyan sa iba pang farmers cooperatives. Dadami ang ani. Dadami ang huli,” he said.