Escudero junks NPC, Cojuangco

MANILA, Philippines—Opposition Sen. Francis Escudero Wednesday rearranged the political landscape ahead of the May 2010 elections by resigning from the Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC), the party founded by business tycoon Eduardo “Danding” Cojuangco Jr.

“I am leaving my party because I believe that I can fulfill the role that I am bound to play in connection with the coming elections … not as a member of any party or a companion of any person, but as just me,” Escudero announced at the historic Club Filipino in San Juan City.

The announcement came after Escudero failed to convince Cojuangco, NPC chair emeritus and chair of San Miguel Corp., to bankroll his presidential candidacy in talks early this week.

“This should be the first test of leadership of any putative candidate—for him to decide on his own and take full responsibility for the decision whether or not to run and what position to run for,” Escudero said at a press conference.

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