THE national leadership of the Kilusang Bagong Lipunan (KBL) has upheld its support for the candidacy of presidential frontrunner Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos, Jr., even as they dispelled reports that some members in their Baguio chapter have shifted their allegiance to another candidate.
In a press conference in Baguio City, KBL Vice President for Luzon Chris Garrido read the party’s official statement, belying the reported withdrawal of support from its Baguio chapter members.
“This is to inform the public that there is no truth to the publicized withdrawal of support of the KBL members in Baguio City. We want to assure you that our officers and members are fully in support of BBM,” a portion of the statement signed by KBL National President Efren A Rafanan Sr. read.
On April 13, a group of KBL-Baguio Benguet officers were invited to a private residence lunch meeting and told to bring their appointment papers by a fellow party official.
Several officers who attended the Wednesday event explained to the media members that they were kept in the dark about the reason for the meeting.
After entering the venue, the group said the gates were closed behind them, and media members streamed in, taking photos and videos.
They added that they felt helpless as a tarpaulin bearing the image of Manila Mayor Isko Domagoso was unfurled behind them while they were raising their KBL appointment papers.
“Nakisakay na lang kami dahil wala na kaming magawa at sumunod na lang sa kanila [We just went along with it and followed them],” the group said.
The group also showed a T-shirt, ID sling, and a pack of rice given to them by the event organizer they identified as Aries Mendoza.
According to Rafanan, an initial investigation conducted by Chris Garrido, the party’s vice president for Luzon, revealed a nationwide effort from the Domagoso camp to “present a scenario” where Marcos supporters are backing out and switching to Domagoso.
Rafanan denounced this as “a desperate attempt” to show an artificial increase in the number of his supporters and prevent the victory of BBM, who has consistently topped surveys.
Rafanan said that the KBL leadership is looking to file charges against the individuals responsible for the “frame up” and “vote buying” directed at their members. “We appeal to our supporters to be in tact and vigilant, as there are divide and rule, and demolition strategy being undertaken by opposing parties and individuals to thwart the imminent landslide victory of BBM and SARA and the UniTeam,” Rafanan added.