Bacolod mayor says no truth that Gasataya was ousted by Grupo Progreso

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There is no shade of truth that Cong. Greg Gasataya was rejected or driven out of Grupo Progreso, Bacolod Mayor Evelio Leonardia said in reaction to the solon’s claim during the DYHB-organized Debate Serye 2022 that he did not leave GP but was actually ousted from the group.

“He was the one who ousted himself from Grupo Progreso, not us,” the mayor stressed, adding that for months in the run-up to the filing of the Certificate of Candidacy in October and many weeks after the COC filing, he was claiming neutrality but his actions and pronouncements on the ground showed otherwise.

“His declaration of neutrality was a sham,” Leonardia, further reiterating an earlier statement he made in a November 2021 press conference, said.

At the Debate Serye for congressional candidates of station DYHB Radio Mindanao Network, Gasataya’s rival, businessman Daniel Alfonso “Aksyon Dan” Atayde, tossed the question to the former in the “Pamangkot Mo, Sabton Ko” segment whether he left GP (on his own volition) or he was ousted by the group.

Answering in the dialect, Gasataya said: “Klaro na nga gin sikway ako kag gin pahalin”. (It is clear that I was rejected and eventually ousted).

He further insinuated that his departure from the group was the handiwork of the mayor’s political operators; a claim which GP said is unfounded.

Gasataya further claimed that Atayde was already his replacement in waiting, an accusation again belied by the party as a figment of his wild imagination.

Greg is just trying to save his face by looking for a scapegoat. Dan Atayde became part of the GP family only last March 8, 2022, while Gasataya, as our leaders down the grassroots testified, had been doing the 11 rounds of the barangays already with our rival camp, even long before the COC filing in October.

“Even with these persistent feedbacks then, we still included him in our tarps and other materials that we used when we filed our COCs last Oct. 6, hoping and believing that he will stay neutral as he had claimed,” the mayor said.