HAVEN’T I written some time ago that Tarzan Lazatin perhaps can be listed as one of the best political strategists in today's politics. Only two loses and several poll victories from 1980 to 2016. Look where he is now.
He just emerged winning last Monday the barangay elections versus a tough opponent in Tess Mamac, wife of the popular Tony Mamac who is now in his last term as the village head.
Today, many of his friends and supporters are thinking that after he suffered that defeat against Pamintuan, he already called it quits. Not so fast. Don't make any mistake about it. Tarzan Lazatin is no quitter.
I remember during dinner some time ago at Marquee Mall he said he may take one last crack in 2019 for a city hall run. And despite he was riding in a golf cart in hitting the campaign trail in Balibago, the village which has the biggest voting population among the city’s 33 barangays he polled 4,294 votes against Mamac’s 3,787.
To recall, many people were scratching their heads why a former Mayor and Congressman was interested in running for Barangay Chairman. My own take here is that Pareng Tarzan is so caring a father and wanted to firm up turfs in order to secure the political future of his two juniors, Jonjon the congressman and Pogi.
With a bundle of votes for his two sons any possible future opponents maybe facing a difficult battle against the two young Lazatins. And besides it is known to all and sundries that the Lazatins are big poll spenders and can match centavo for centavo any opponent can spend.
What could be the scenario as painted to me by Pareng Tarzan during our dinner which was joined in by his brain trust cum girl Friday IC Calaguas and Councilor Pogi?
The Lazatins will face all comers in the mayoral race. Congressman Jonjon, by all means, will keep his congressional post and may likely to face Mayor Edpam who is on his last term at City Hall and in all likelihood will pursue his dreams to be a member of congress. Though at this stage, Edpam is still studying various options, like running for the senate in a Federal set-up or get a top position in the Duterte administration.
What about the Nepomucenos? Maybe Bryan can remain as vice mayor and hopefully can finish three terms. As it is the Nepos have been losing steam in Angeles politics quite a while now.
Luckily enough, Bryan was saved by businessman Rodolfo Pineda when he requested Pamintuan to take him as his running mate, and the latter obliged despite the fact that Bryan was not his real choice.
At this stage, Bryan’s popularity has been rising since and with Pineda’s help, he may face either Tarzan or son Pogi. And also in the running is Clark International Airport Corporation President Alex Caugiran who is making good on the latest surveys. Alex is also one of the closest friends of Bong Pineda.
Many things can still happen between now when the hustings will start in October next year. In short, we only have to wait more than four months who are the runners, not only in Angeles City but in the whole Pampanga as well.
In the province, seemingly those who will contest the governorship will be Vice Governor Dennis “Delta” Pineda and fourth district Congressman Rimpy Bondoc. The congressman most likely will pick Bacolor Mayor Jomar Hizon as running mate.
Pineda may favor Senior Board Member Ferdinand “Dinan” Labung as his vice who’s known and popular in the third congressional district which dopesters are saying this will be the battleground area in the gubernatorial race next May next year.