GENERAL SANTOS CITY – A broadcaster-turned bigtime owner of the Brigada News Group of Companies has formally filed his certificate of candidacy for mayor in the tuna capital of the Philippines.
Brigada Group of Companies Founder and CEO Elmer Catulpos filed his COC Thursday at the Commissions on Elections to signal his readiness to battle it out with other mayoral contenders in the 2022 local and national elections.
Catulpos was backed by the elite politicians in General Santos City – the Antoninos, former City Mayor Adelbert Antonino and his wife, former South Cotabato representative Lualhati Antonino.
The former broadcaster is the standard bearer of a local political party, Achievement with Integrity Movement (AIM), founded by the Antonino’s in the 90s
Prior to the official filing of candidacies of the complete line up of AIM party, a mass was held at the Antonino residence.
“I offer myself and the use of my experiences for the progress of the city. It’s up to the people to judge us come election time,” Catulpos told reporters who covered him live at the Comelec office.
Catulpos said his battlecry “Barug Gensan” (Stand Up General Santos) will give focus on resolving the issues brought about by the deadly coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), which include the needs to provide proper health care to the covid-positive victims and their immediate relatives.
He said among his top priority and election agenda includes “providing full support to local hospitals and medical front-liners, and ensuring the availability of basic services such as free medicine and Covid-19 testing.”
Businessman Catulpos, who is currently the president of General Santos City Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc., said that to enable the local economy to “bounce back” against the very threatening global crisis and covid scare, is to prioritize the health care needs of the populace of this city.
Catulpos will be battling it out with South Cotabato first district Rep. Shirlyn Banas-Nograles as she also filed her mayoral candidacy last Ocotber 4.
The sister-in-law of Boxer Manny Pacquiao only known as Lorelei has also filed her certificate of candidacy for the same mayoral position last October 6, 2021.
The 45-year-old Catulpos started a mere beat reporter of Bombo Radyo Gensan in late 90s. After his stint in Bombo Gensan, Catulpos transferred to two more radio stations, until he published the very promising tabloid ” “Brigada” in 2005 with a meager capital of only P1,000.
To date, the small tabloid business of Catulpos, has become the biggest media company in Gensan, now operating 40 FM radio stations in many parts of the country, a television network, cable TV channels, and a network of Brigada newspapers in Mindanao.
The Brigada Group, it was learned also operates a chain of pharmacies, a security agency, health product lines, resorts, events venue among other businesses. – PNA