MANILA, March 30, 2004
By Edu Punay - Like father, unlike son.

Dolphy Jr., or Rodolfo Quizon Jr., the son and namesake of comedy king Dolphy, is supporting the presidential bid of evangelist Eddie Villanueva of the Bangon Pilipinas Movement (BPM).

Dolphy is campaigning for his close friend, Koalis-yon ng Nagkakaisang Pilipino (KNP) presidential candidate Fernando Poe Jr.

The eldest Quizon son publicly declared his support for Villanueva at the launch of the Bangon Artista volunteer group at the Music Museum in Greenhills, San Juan yesterday.

He told reporters he supports the Jesus is Lord Church Worldwide (JIL) founder "all the way. I have a commitment to the Lord to support (Villanueva)."

Quizon said he is hopeful that God is using Villanueva as an instrument of change for the better in the Philippines.

He said his father is aware that his children support Villanueva, adding that "the good thing is my father respects our decision and we respect his, too."

Quizon said some of his siblings, who are all from the same religious affiliation, will also support Villanueva. His brother, Freddy, has been very vocal about supporting Villanueva, Quizon said.

Quizon, who was imprisoned for 18 years for an arson case in the early 1980s, said Villanueva played a significant role in reforming his life.

"When I was inside (jail), I saw (Villanueva) on TV. He was God’s tool to change me," he said, adding that he has abandoned his vices since meeting Villanueva.

Quizon is one of over 100 artists who pledged support for Villanueva’s candidacy.

The Bangon Artista group plans to push Villanueva’s bid for the presidency by holding independent sorties, which Villanueva can no longer do due to time constraints.

These artist-volunteers intend to use their influence to help deliver a landslide victory to Villanueva. BPM officials, meanwhile, said the artists and members of other BPM volunteer groups must familiarize themselves with Villanueva’s platforms.

BPM spokesman Luis Sison has explained Villanueva’s main platforms to the volunteers. These platforms focus on graft and corruption, education, agricultural reforms and moral restoration.

The BPM earlier launched its volunteer groups Bangon Kababaihan and Bangon Kabataan, which, with the Bangon Artista group will work to gather their target of 14 million votes for Villanueva.

The Bangon Artista volunteers include Kuh Ledesma, Connie Reyes, Audie Gemora, Yoyoy Villame, Carla Martinez, Carlo Orosa, Chat Silayan, Angeli Pangilinan-Valenciano, Nonoy Zuñiga, Kata Inocencio and Jeric Soriano.

They are set to meet on Wednesday to officially begin implementing the BPM’s "40-day strategic plan."

Villanueva believes that, as Jesus Christ ascended into heaven 40 days after rising from the dead, so will 40 days be sufficient for him to be propelled to the presidency.

Villanueva, however, admitted that the next 40 days will be a tough period for BPM officials and volunteers and said "that is natural for candidates who abide by election rules."

He said he has not been doing very well in the surveys because he started campaigning at a much later date than his rivals for the presidency did.

"We only began our campaign on Feb. 11, as required by law," Villanueva said. "Others have been campaigning since last year."

He said he is slowly winning support from more people and sectors as a result of his intensive nationwide campaign.

According to Villanueva, thousands of his supporters filled venues for his rallies in provincial sorties. He also noted the massive presence of his "Josiah army" in rallies in Cebu City and Cabanatuan City.

Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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