Bzzzzz: Surprise, surprise: Duranos lose House seat in turf 4th district; Chan, Sitoy wrest Lapu-Lapu City Hall from Radazas. Close fights turned out to be lopsided: PJ Garcia over Sonny O., Jonas over Luigi

CEBU. (From left) Duke Frasco, Red Durano, Pablo John Garcia, Sonny Osmeña, Junard Chan, and Arturo Radaza. (SunStar File)

WHO would have thought the Durano clan and its Bakud party would lose the congressional seat to a non-Durano, former Liloan, Cebu mayor Duke Frasco, who challenged the family's vaunted control of Cebu's fifth district? The district comprises Danao City and 10 towns: Borbon, Carmen, Catmon, Compostela, Liloan, Pilar, Poro, San Francisco, Sogod and Tudela.

In past elections, since ages ago, the post of congressman had always been held by a Durano. From the eighth Congress in 1987-1002 to the 17th Congress in 2016-2019, a Durano occupied the seat: Ramon D. Durano III, Joseph Felix Mari "Ace" Durano, Ramon "Red" H. Durano VI, Ace Durano and again Red Durano. Fielding a rep for the family was unlikely because the clan has had enough supply of politicians to pass around public office titles among themselves. Sometimes, the fight was a Durano vs Durano. An outsider would have little chance.

This midterm fight, Frasco, son-in-law of Representative Gwen Garcia, who will be the next governor according to unofficial results, competed against incumbent Red Durano and won.

Ahong Chan downs Boy

Another major surprise was the loss of Lapu-Lapu City's top two City Hall seats to an under-rated contender: Junard "Ahong" Chan, a barangay captain. Chan and his vice mayor, Celsi Sitoy, scored a major upset as weeks before election day, the team had already been marginalized by their opponents.

A question of disqualification, raised by the "negligence" of the Comelec law department, was resolved in Ahong's favor less than a week before May 13.

Not nip-and-tuck affairs

What the public expected to be close battles were actually lopsided matches:

* Pablo John Garcia of PDP-Laban beat up John Henry "Sonny" Osmeña, an independent, in the fight for Cebu's third district House seat: 127,102 votes against 74,584 or a whooping majority of 52,618 for PJ.

* Jonas Cortes of PDP-Laban mangled reelectionist Luigi Quisumbing of NPC, in the clash for the Mandaue City mayor's post: 101,641 against 58,842, or a yawning 42,799-vote gap in favor of Jonas. [Figures posted as of Tuesday, May 14, 3:50 p.m., ABS-CBN Halalan)


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