RJ Aquino goes for another crack to win a seat. (FB photo)

Vancouver, B.C.

OneCity founder optimistic

By Ted Alcuitas

A two-time candidate for Vancouver’s city council is again making another attempt to win a seat in the coming October 20, 2018 municipal election.

Rafael Joseph Aquino, better known as ‘RJ’ , says his family is his original inspiration for getting involved in civic affairs.

In a Facebook post announcing his candidacy, the aspiring politician recalled how the Filipino community rallied to his support to get the nomination for COPE in the 2011 elections. He placed 20th with 39,055 votes in that election.

The 37-year-old soon to be father of three works as Head of Client Success for a marketing technology company specializing in automotive space.

He lives in the Collingwood-Joyce area of Vancouver.

“So many of you were energized by that election you also came out to support me in 2014 when we founded a new political movement with OneCity where I ran as the lone candidate for council,” Aquino said.

The fledging party did not win a seat but Aquino maintains that it put the city on notice “that OneCity was a political force to be reckoned with.”

OneCity has grown and is “continuing to build new relationships and foster existing ones, “ according to Aquino.

He says they have developed policies that will directly address the growing inequality in this city nd are engaged with people from all neighbourhoods and walks of life.

The party elected Carrie Bercic, its first school board member In October 2017.

Aquino on Duterte

We asked the candidate about his views on Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte and he sent us the following:

“I have a lot to say about Duterte, the culture of impunity, extra-judicial killings and how the weaponization of social media in the Philippines is destroying the social fabric of our culture.

In summary, there’s nothing redeemable about the man even when taking into account and isolating his progressive initiatives. Taken as a whole, he’s a blight on humanity and one of my biggest concerns are the ongoing attempts to paint his actions/legacy in a positive light (not unlike what’s happening with Marcos) by sycophants who attempt to depict authoritarianism as a necessary, steadying step to bring order to the country. That way of thinking is so lazy and I instantly lose respect for anyone attempting to bring that mindset that (sic) into any serious discourse.”

Deadline for membership is this Saturday, March 17. Here’s the link: http://www.onecityvancouver.ca/join .

OneCity will be holding a nomination meeting sometime in the summer.