DAGUPAN CITY — Mayor Belen Fernandez, standard bearer of the Liberal Party (LP) in Dagupan City, is now unopposed following the withdrawal from the race early today of her lone opponent Celia Lim of the Nacionalista Party (NP).
The withdrawal of Lim was announced in a phone patch interview on radio at noon Tuesday by her son and runningmate Vice Mayor Brian Lim who said that his mother was not the only one who withdrew her candidacy but also the candidate for vice mayor of the other party, Brian Kua, the incumbent barangay captain of Pogo Chico and Fernandez’s runningmate.
That was a mutual withdrawal by the candidate for mayor of the NP as well as the candidate for vice mayor of the LP, Lim said, insinuating that he (Brian Lim) too is also unopposed in his re-election bid for vice mayor of Dagupan City for a second term of office.
The withdrawal of Kua was confirmed by him in a text message to PNA at noon today, where he stated: “I have withdrawn from the race for vice mayor. But whatever help I gave to the people of Dagupan City will be continued by me”. He added he will continue to help the administration of Mayor Fernandez.
He did not specify any reason for his withdrawal.
Meanwhile, Vice Mayor Lim admitted that the main reason his mother Celia has withdrawn from the race is for her to devote his full time in taking care of his father, former Mayor Benjamin Lim (husband of Celia) who is still recovering from a stroke he suffered in 2013 on the eve of the local elections.
He said his father is now recovering and needs full care and attention from his mother Celia. It was former Mayor Lim, he said, who encouraged his mother to back out from the race so she can devote full attention to him during his period of recovery.
In the 2013 election, then Mayor Lim lost to then Vice Mayor Belen Fernandez while his son, Brian Lim, won for vice mayor. PNA/ northboundasia.com