Supporters of Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. at a campaign rally in Woodside, N.Y. on Feb. 21.  (Photo by Caesar Barangan)

Filipino-American community leaders in New York gathered on Feb. 21 at Tito Rad’s Grill & Restaurant in Woodside, N.Y. to see and hear via FaceTime Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on his campaign for the vice presidency of the Philippines in the May 9 elections.

For more than half an hour, Marcos spoke about the start of his campaign in his hometown of Batac, Ilocos Norte, and in tandem with Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago for the coming Philippine elections, and discussed in detail his political platform of Progresibong Bukas, which means a “Progressive Future,” and in uniting all sectors for a better and prosperous Philippines setting aside the divisiveness and the dirty politics that are prevalent in the present dispensation.

He reported that he was going around the Ilocos region, from Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, La Union, Pangasinan, Abra, Cagayan Valley up to the Mountain Provinces of Benguet and Ifugao to solidify the so-called Ilocano votes.

Marcos was in Cagayan de Oro City for the presidential debates to support Santiago when he called and said the campaign has started very according to their plans that the Aquino government has begun its dirty tricks of sabotaging his campaign.

Marcos even mentioned that President Benigno Aquino III in a speech in California last week said that the senator is not true to himself that he even dyes his gray hair to look younger.


Vice presidential candidate Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. appears on the screen via FaceTime at his campaign rally organized by New York Filipino-Americans in Woodside, N.Y.  (Photo by Caesar Barangan)

Marcos in jest thanked the President for giving importance to his hair in spite of the President’s heavy workload that are needed to be attended to.

Marcos said that in the coming weeks he will be going to Southern Luzon, all the way to the Bicol region, his competitor’s hometown, to ask support in joining him for the Progresibong Bukas platform, as well as the Visayas, Mindanao and other parts of the country.

During his FaceTime dialogue with the community leaders, he thanked them for their support and requested them to get their relatives back home in the Philippines to vote for him on May 9.

The forum was led by Willie Paderon where he enumerated the legislative and executive experience of Marcos, compared to the other four aspirants.

Other speakers were Atty. Eden Bolante, who introduced Marcos; Charlie Paredes of the Retired Philippine Military Officers in America; and Cecille Gullas, a community leader who spoke about the Mindanao issue and the Bangsamoro Basic Law.
Lead convenors of the forum were Dr. Nel Bolante, Caesar Barangan, Rommel Esguerra and Lourdes Pilar.

Among the community leaders in attendance were Atty. Dulce Barangan, president of the Ilocano Association of America; Nelia Ferrette; Rommel Esguerra of Taytay Filipino Americans for Bongbong; Chris Lagman of Tarlac; Gus Florin from The Bicolandia; Ver Pilar of Bacarra; and Nonoy Sim from Aklan.

Some prominent Filipino-American businessmen also joined the event.

Among them were Evan Prado, Ramon Moralejo, Perla Chua and Danny Cabrera.

Plans are already in the works for the next Bongbong Marcos Campaign Forum tentatively to be held in Jersey City, N.J. in early March.


Willie Paderon, who led the forum, delivers speech at Tito Rad’s Grill & Restaurant in Woodside, N.Y. on Feb. 21.  (Photo by Caesar Barangan)

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