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Miriam, Bongbong to kick off campaign in Ilocos

Senators Miriam Defensor-Santiago and Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. are set to kick off their campaign for the May elections in Batac City, Ilocos Norte, the hometown of the latter’s father, former President Ferdinand Marcos Sr.

As the campaign period formally opens on Tuesday, Santiago and Marcos Jr. are set to start the day with a Mass at the Our Lady of Immaculate Conception Church in Batac before holding a proclamation rally at the Imelda Cultural Center.

Named after former First Lady and incumbent Ilocos Norte Rep. Imelda Marcos, the multi-million-peso cultural center was expanded and re-inaugurated last year as the premier sports and events venue of the province.

After the kick-off rally, Santiago and Marcos Jr. are also scheduled to speak before the students of the Don Mariano Marcos State University also in Batac.

In the afternoon, they will attend the inauguration of additional windmills that were constructed at the Curimao, Ilocos Norte solar power plant.

The two will then head to Ilocos Sur to attend a dinner meeting with the local officials, including former Ilocos Sur governor Luis Chavit who is running for councilor of Narvacan town. The meeting will be held at Vigan Convention Center.

While Santiago is set to go back to Metro Manila on the same day, Marcos Jr. will continue his campaign sorties in Northern Luzon for the rest of the week.

On Wednesday, he is set to hold campaign sorties in Vigan City and other municipalities of Ilocos Sur, while on Thursday, he will be heading to La Union.

He will also hold sorties in Pangasinan on Friday and Saturday before heading back to Metro Manila.

The Ilocos region is a known bailiwick of the Marcos clan. The Marcos family also enjoys strong support in other Ilocano-speaking provinces in Northern Luzon such Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya and La Union.

But while Marcos Jr.’s sorties seemed to be all set, a group of martial law victims has just launched the “Campaign Against the Return of the Marcoses to Malacañang” or CARMMA.

The group, on its Facebook page, said “CARMMA aims to torpedo the VP aspiration of Bongbong Marcos through public information and mass actions”.

The group said their mass actions “will hound Marcos wherever he goes” as they will try to maximize their “exposure” on tri-media (print, radio and television) as well as the new media or the Internet.

The group said the target of their campaign is to educate the public, especially the youth, about the human rights abuses prevalent during the Martial Law era under the late President Marcos. — BAP, GMA News