The Nacionalista Party (NP) has denied reports that it had asked TV host Willie Revillame to be the running mate of its standard bearer, Sen. Manny Villar, for the 2010 elections.
In a press conference held yesterday, September 22, in the Senate, NP spokespersons Gilbert Remulla and Adel Tamano said the party had not even discussed the tandem's possibility.
Tamano even joked that Willie, who returned to his noontime show Wowowee last Monday, Sept. 21, after more than a month's absence, could only run in a marathon, and not in a race to the two highest positions in the land.
Remulla also said in GMA-7's morning show Unang Hirit last Monday that Sen. Villar never made the alleged VP proposal to Willie. Remulla also denied that their party is offering Willie even a senatorial slot.
"Not once na pinag-usapan 'yan. Kaya sa lahat ng nagtsitsismis diyan, wala pong katotohanan 'yon," he said.
But previous reports stated that Villar is willing to reserve a slot for Willie if he chooses to run for senator.
"Oo, naman, very qualified naman si Willie, wala naman akong nakikitang problema kay Willie. Yun ay isang bagay na dapat niyang pag-isipan," Villar said in a press conference last month.
Sen. Villar and Willie's close alliance may have roots in their previous business deals. The TV host's new 500-to-600-million-peso Wil Theater Mall, for instance, is allegedly a co-venture with the senator, who owns several companies involved in real estate.
WHERE THERE'S SMOKE... Talks of the rumored political teamup started flying last August 23 in Davao City, after Villar appeared onstage together with Willie, who was performing in a concert for the Kadayawan Festival.
The short, rain-drenched concert titled "Wowowillie" was sponsored by the senator. At 8 p.m., the sound system broke down due to the inclement weather, and the concert had to be cancelled.
Sen. Villar, who was dripping wet, addressed the crowd composed of an estimated 120,000 Davaoeños.
"Nagpapasalamat kami sa mainit na pagtanggap ng Davaoeños sa amin. Humihingi rin kami ng paumanhin sa pagkansela ng show ni Willie dahil nakakaawa naman po ang mga nanonood na basang-basa na ng ulan," Sen. Villar apologized for the concert's cancellation.
The senator previously appeared on the March 28 episode of Wowowee, accompanying his daughter Camille, who was a contestant in one of the show's segments. He also told Willie and the audience what he thinks are the solutions needed to help Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW).
"Kailangan malutas natin ang problema ng kahirapan, para yung ating mga OFW naman ay matulungan natin nang husto at sa mga darating na panahon, maganda rin naman na makabalik sila dito na may trabaho, at may pagkakataon," Sen. Villar said.
Sen. Villar appeared in the noontime show for the second time last July 25, where he gave away six house-and-lot packages to OFW contestants.