THE son of Tarlac Province is back and is wooing the support of his fellow Tarlaqueños in his bid for a senate seat in the coming May 2022 national and local elections.
Gilberto “Gibo” Cojuangco Teodoro Jr. who was warmly welcomed by Tarlac officials led by Governor Susan Yap at the Diwa ng Tarlac, November 25, was accompanied by his wife, former Tarlac first district Representative and now Special Envoy to the United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund [Unicef] Monica “Nikki” Prieto-Teodoro and son Jaime.
Teodoro was a former board member representing the Kabataang Barangay [1980-1986], a former three-term Congressman of the first district of Tarlac [2018-2007] and a former Defense Secretary [2007-2010] under the administration of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
After his presidential bid, Teodoro, a lawyer and the 1995 bar top-notcher, went on a political hiatus and worked in the private sector until he resurfaced politically this year as the reported running-mate of Sara Duterte who was then being groomed to run for president.
7 Pillars of Governance
“Ako po ay bumabalik sa plataporma bagong Pilipinas para sa bagong henerasyon. Kasi po, sa nakikita natin, ang sitwasyon ngayon na pandemya at ang ginagawa ng mga bansa sa ibayong dagat napakabilis nilang maka-react at nagpapalit ang sistema ng gubyerno nila,” he said.
Teodoro said that there is a need to develop our country and create a new Philippines not only in changing the attitude of Filipinos but a real change in the entire system.
“That is why I use the term re-engineering the country in my seven-pillars. Not only simple changes, but re-engineering our country,” the Tarlac senatorial aspirant said adding that the main problem of the Philippines is its system.
According to him, the important thing today is the real implementation of local autonomy.
“Ang tunay na downloading ng pondo magmula sa national government hanggang sa local government units. Nakikita po natin na ang daming unspent and unutilized na pondo ang national government agencies na pwede naming i-download sa inyo na karapatan ninyo so that you can respond and react,” Teodoro explained.
He said that everybody in Congress have to watch the implementation and fight for the real devolution and empowerment of the LGUs.
Yun ho ang mamanmanan natin…kailangang bantayan natin, kasama ng inyong mga kongresista na ipaglaban ang tunay na debolusyon at empowerment of all LGUs,” he pointed-out.
Tarlac Officials Vow Support
In his welcome remarks, Vice Governor Carlito “Casada” David detailed the accomplishments of Teodoro from being a member of the Provincial Board as a 16-year old KB President to him becoming Defense Secretary and promised that he will campaign hard for his senatorial bid next year.
Representative Victor Yap said that Tarlaqueños need to stand side-by-side with Teodoro in his fight for a senate seat.
“Isang karangalan po natin sa Tarlac na isang kababayan natin ang magiging senador. Alam na natin ang kanyang kakayahan at kalibre. Our province ever since has been a part of the senate and it’s about time, again, that we put somebody there representing our province,” Cong. Yap said.
Noel Villanueva, the incumbent third district Congressman said that he already envisioned Teodoro being in the senate a long time ago.
“Ipakita natin sa buong Pilipinas ang ating buong-buong pagsuporta kay Gibo Teodoro. Ang laban niyang ito ay di lamang laban niyang mag-isa. Ito ay laban ng buong Tarlac,” Villanueva said.
Gov. Yap for her part said that she owes Teodoro a lot of debt of gratitude.
“Lingid sa kaalaman nyo, wala po ako dito kundi dahil kay Senator Gibo. Nung una pa lang, he was instrumental in my candidacy in congress then. Kaya ibabalik ko po ten-fold ang trabaho para siguraduhin ang kanyang panalo sa Tarlac at sa bansa bilang senador.” she said.
The governor vowed to campaign hard for the victory of Teodoro and urged all officials to do the same.
The three Nationalist Peoples Coalition [NPC] congressional candidates Jaime Cojuangco, Christian Tell Yap and Bong Rivera likewise praised Teodoro’s public service record and vowed to campaign for his senate bid.
“Pagkaisahan po natin siyang iboto sa senado dahil alam po nating lahat na pagsisilbihan niya ng buong puso ang ating bansa,” Cojuangco said.
Cojuangco is a nephew of Teodoro and substituted for his father Cong. Charlie Cojuangco.
Christian Tell Yap, the incumbent Mayor of Victoria town and a second district Congressional candidate who substituted for his uncle, Cong. Yap, thanked Teodoro for his presence and said, Nagalak po ako nung nalaman ko na nag-file si Senator Gibo bilang senador. Bata pa po ako iniidolo ko na siya.”
He also made mention of his record as a three-term congressman of the first district, secretary of defense, bar topnotcher, his Masters of Law at Harvard University and him being a certified helicopter pilot.
Rivera on the other hand, said that the entire NPC ticket will campaign not only in Tarlac but also in the other provinces where they have relatives and friends.
Majority of Tarlac’s elected officials are stalwarts of NPC, a political party Teodoro’s uncle, the late Ambassador Danding Cojuangco founded in 1992.