Tacloban ain’t the battleground: Bem Noel eyes Congress comeback

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TACLOBAN CITY — A former partylist solon is seeking to return to his old post, dismissing rumors that he will be his former political foe’s running mate in the city’s mayoralty race.

Former An Waray Partylist Rep. Florencio Noel confirmed his decision to return as first nominee of the party list they founded in 2001. The group first joined the national elections in 2004.

His pronouncement ended speculations that he will be the running-mate of former Tacloban Mayor Alfred Romualdez, Noel’s opponent in the city’s mayoralty bid in 2013.

In the same year, then President Benigno Aquino campaigned for Noel’s mayoralty bid against Romualdez, a nephew of former first lady Imelda Marcos.

Romualdez is making a comeback after a three-year break. His wife, Cristina, a former actress, is the incumbent mayor.

“I will not run for vice mayor since I am going back to An Waray, but I am supporting (former) Mayor Romualdez’s plan to return to Tacloban city hall,” Noel told reporters on Monday.

“I will be the first nominee of the An Waray again. We will be filing on October 11 with a full slate, the five nominees of An Waray, which I will announce on a proper time but for sure I will be the first nominee,” said Noel, who was the patylist solon from 2004 to 2013.

Florencio’s sister, incumbent partylist Rep. Victoria Isabel Noel, will return to law practice.

Among the priorities of the An Waray party-list group is the provision of livelihood assistance to the people, aside from its current thrust on education and medical services.

The party list is a democratic multi-sectoral party-list organization that envisions a just, progressive and peaceful Filipino society characterized by its principles of sense of community, peace, and progress through the adoption of a community-based and peace oriented development agenda. (PNA)