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50 Ilocos officials back Mar

DAGUPAN CITY, Pangasinan— Solid North no more?

More than 50 local officials from Ilocos Region and the province of Abra met yesterday here with Liberal Party standard-bearer Mar Roxas to declare full support for his presidential bid, breaking the famed Solid North vote which is perceived to deliver substantial vote for Senator Bongbong Marcos and Vice President Jejomar Binay.

Led by Ilocos Sur Rep. Eric Singson, a relative of Ilocos Sur Gov. Chavit Singson, the local officials who are present during the meeting are composed of congressmen and mayors from Ilocos Sur, La Union, Pangasinan and Abra.

Also present were Pangasinan Gov. Amado Espino and Abra Gov. Eustaquio Bersamin.

“We are supporting Mar and Leni… We will show how we are going to work to deliver votes for Mar,” Singson told reporters in an interview here.

The local officials present are mainly from the areas which produce tobacco. In yesterday’s gathering, Singson declared that their support to Roxas and Robredo is a way of paying back not for the release of the tobacco excise tax amounting to P11 billion.

“This is the first time that we received such a large amount of funds from excise funds. We Ilocanos know how to pay debt of gratitude, we will not be stricken amnesia when the time comes,” said Singson.

Based on his assessment, Singson assured that the 2nd district of Ilocos Sur will certainly go for Mar Roxas, along with the 1st district of La Union, the entire Abra and almost all areas in Pangasinan.