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Groups want Vilma Santos to run for governor in 2025; ex-town mayor announces bid

BATANGAS CITY – Is former Batangas governor Rosa Vilma Santos Recto running for governor again?

Many supporters, fans and followers of the award-winning actress who had served as governor and mayor of Lipa City for three terms are rooting for her comeback at the Provincial Capitol as incumbent Batangas Governor Hermilando Mandanas is serving his final third three-year term.

Santos-Recto, 70, also a former congresswoman, however, has been mum about her political plans as her husband, former Senator Ralph Recto, assumed as the new Finance Secretary of the Marcos administration.

Meanwhile, former 1-Care party-list representative Mike Rivera, a former mayor Padre Garcia town, formally announced on January 15 his 2025 gubernatorial bid in this province during a regular flag-raising ceremony at the Padre Garcia Atrium Municipal Hall ground.

Rivera announced his 2025 plan following the endorsement of former senator and now Finance Secretary Ralph Recto.

Rivera made the announcement in the presence of his wife, Celsa, who is the incumbent mayor of this town, and his son, Micko Angelo Rivera, the incumbent vice-mayor of this town, and supporters.

CWS party-list Rep. Edwin Gardiola and Batangas 4th District Rep. Lianda Bolilia were also present during the flag-raising in support of Rivera’s candidacy.

Rivera said his motto is “I Love Batangas” to profess his undying love for his fellow Batangueños.

He admitted he wanted to serve his province with transparency, genuine concern, and unbiased dispensing of assistance to all Batangueños, regardless of their status in life.

Rivera is yet to announce his vice governor.

Mataas na Kahoy Mayor Jay Ilagan,  president of Vice Mayors’ League of the Philippines Batangas Chapter, is reportedly keen on throwing his hat on the Batangas gubernatorial derby.