BAUANG, La Union – ‘No one can stop me from this fight. My decision (to run for governor) is firm and unconditional.”
Thus said Henry Bacurnay, the Undersecretary for External Affairs at the Office of the President, who earlier filed his candidacy as an independent candidate for the La Union gubernatorial race.
Bacurnay confirmed reports that before the start of filing of certificates of candidacy last October, influential individuals dissuaded him from running in the provincial contest.
A former member of the provincial board, Bacurnay is also a card-carrying member of the ruling Liberal Party.
“Even after the filing (since there is still a substitution of candidates until December 10), there are still personalities asking me to slide down. But my decision is final and irrevocable,” Bacurnay told this writer in an interview.
Aside from Bacurnay, those who also filed their COCs for the same position are Abono Partylist Representative Francisco Emmanuel “Pacoy” Ortega III, LP standard bearer; and former Representative Butch Dumpit of the Second Congressional District of La Union.
There are also reports that Mario Ortega, the executive assistant of Gov. Manuel Ortega, will be substituting Janet Cartas, a barangay kagawad of Caba, La Union, who had filed her COC for Governor under the Kilusang Bagong Lipunan.
It was learned that various organizations and peoples’ groups, including La Union’s indigenous peoples, are supporting Bacurnay’s candidacy because they “want a change in leadership at the provincial capitol.”
In an interview with mediamen after filing his COC last October, Bacurnay said that he was fighting for a ‘change’ to help uplift the lives of La Union residents by providing them easier access to government services.
“Government should be closer to the people, and should have easier access to services such those in health, and can readily avail of them in hospitals or health centers,” Bacurnay said.
Bacurnay said that, if given a chance, he would also prioritize programs on poverty alleviation, economic development, improvement of the agricultural sector, among others. JUN ELIAS/NorthboundPH